The current COVID-19 surge is causing hospitals to fill up across the Kansas City metro area. Emergency rooms are seeing longer wait times, limited beds and more staff out sick.

Local health systems like Saint Luke’s are still prioritizing critical patients who come through the emergency room, but the recent influx of patients coming in can make it harder to serve those most in need.

Knowing when to go to the emergency room and when to seek another level of care can be a helpful tool if you’re looking for treatment for COVID-19 or other illnesses, and if you want to do what you can to help hospitals from getting overwhelmed.

The Kansas City Star talked to Dr. Marc Larsen, emergency physician on Saint Luke's COVID-19 Response Team, about how to decide when and where to seek care.

Read the Kansas City Star article: With Kansas City hospitals short on beds, when should you go to the ER vs. urgent care?

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