Lessons from lockdown: How COVID-19 Alert Levels impacted Midland hospital admissions
New research is shedding light on the impact of COVID-19 Alert Levels on injury-related hospital admissions across the Midland region and how people were injured during lockdown.
The study by the Midland Trauma System (MTS), published in the New Zealand Medical Journal today, shows a marked decrease in admissions during Alert Levels 4 and 3 last year, but found it was short-lived as the country moved to levels 2 and 1.
It also revealed some significant fluctuations in the types of injuries presented to emergency departments at Midland hospitals.
The research team says the data from the study will help inform planning around demand and healthcare access for similar scenarios in the future.
The Midland region is made up of Bay of Plenty, Tairāwhiti, Taranaki, Lakes and Waikato DHBs which together cover a population of approximately 985,285 people.
The research covered the period of February 15 to July 11, 2020 and compared it to the average number of admissions during the same period between 2017 and 2019.
That timeframe covers pre-lockdown, the week of lockdown and the movement through all four alert levels. However, the research team focused on Alert Levels 4, 3, and 2 to try and exclude dramatic changes in behaviours as the region prepared to move into Level 4 restrictions and Level 1 which had practically no community restrictions.
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Waikato DHB Newsroom: March, 29 2021