Huntsville Hospital President explains decision to postpone elective inpatient surgeries

"We were all looking for this to be over. I guess it's more like, well here we go again," said Tracy Doughty, Huntsville Hospital President.

Posted: Aug 11, 2021 7:32 PM

Apprehensive, that's the way the President of Huntsville Hospital described how his staff is feeling.

It comes after the hospital system postponed elective surgeries at locations in Madison County.

"We were all looking for this to be over. I guess it's more like, well here we go again," said Tracy Doughty, Huntsville Hospital President.

Doughty said the decision to postpone elective inpatient surgeries was a tough one.

"Any time that you cancel surgeries, it's a hard decision. We waited till the last minute. We prepared for it, let everyone know what is going on, but waited till the last minute before we pulled the trigger," said Doughty.

The recent spike in COVID-19 cases was the driving force behind the decision.

Doughty said it's crucial to make sure there are enough resources for COVID positive patients and other emergencies. 

"Plus other things going on in our hospital. In the community, there are still heart attacks, strokes, and all those things going on and we want to make sure we have enough resources meaning beds and staff to take care of all those critical things," said Doughty.

Doughty told us the staff is still hard at work, doing more outpatient surgeries. 

"They want to get back to normal. But they're still just as busy doing the outpatient procedures. So they are still busy working, taking care of surgical patients," said Doughty.

He added his staff makes sure to help each other out, all in an effort to take care of your family. "We hate to see the numbers go up, but they are what they are and it's our job to take care of those patients," said Doughty.

As for when those elective in-patient procedures will return, Doughty said they are hoping to be able to get back to doing those as soon as possible. But right now, there is no timeframe.

To see our previous reporting on this story, click here

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