Atrium deploys mobile emergency department in Charlotte to help with respiratory illness cases
Atrium Health’s Mobile Emergency Department, MED-1, has been deployed at Charlotte hospitals to help with a rise in emergency room visits. The MED-1 is an emergency department on wheels that can help treat less critical patients and provide additional bed space.
Officials said the decision to deploy Atrium’s MED-1 to Atrium Health Carolinas Medical Center and Atrium Health Levine Children’s Hospital was a preventive one, driven by concerns over rising cases of flu and other viral illnesses.
Physicians and administrators with Levine Children’s Hospital told reporters Monday that children’s ER visits remain high, but that those visits fell slightly over the last week.
Callie Dobbins with Levine Children’s Hospital said now is the perfect time to "prepare and be ready for more viral illnesses that we expect to happen later this year and that will be using our MED-1 assets."
Chan Rouse, with Carolinas Medical Center, said that deploying MED-1 helps provide capacity to treat the everyday traumas that come through the ER.
"We serve as an emergency department across the community, so we are fully prepared for any patient surge that we might face," said Rouse.
Patients who need lab work, medication refills, or X-rays can be seen in MED-1 — as well as those suffering from rashes, lacerations or minor sprains.
Officials have said that even as the COVID-19 pandemic wanes, they're seeing higher-than-usual cases of flu and RSV, a viral illness that's particularly dangerous for very young children.