UCHealth marks 2,000th COVID-19 hospitalized patient to recover, leave hospital

New treatments, experienced medical teams and access to clinical trials are contributing to improved outcomes for COVID-19 patients.
Oct. 6, 2020
UCHealth staff celebrated as a man leaves the hospital with a walker. He is one of 2,001 UCHealth COVID survivors as of Oct. 6, 2020. 
Six weeks after entering the UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital, Robert Carver went home. UCHealth staff celebrated his release from the hospital. He is one of 2,001 UCHealth COVID survivors as of Oct. 6, 2020.

More than 2,000 patients recovering from COVID-19 have now been discharged from UCHealth hospitals throughout Colorado and now are able to continue their recoveries either at home or in post-acute care centers.

Overall, UCHealth has cared for nearly 30% of the state’s patients hospitalized with COVID-19.

“We are encouraged seeing these numbers of patients win the battle against COVID-19 and leave our hospitals to continue their recoveries,” said UCHealth Chief Medical Officer Dr. Peg Reidy.

COVID survivors

Of UCHealth’s 2,001 patients who have been discharged as of Oct. 6, 2020, 1,211 patients have been able to leave the health care system’s hospitals in metro Denver, 456 from northern Colorado hospitals, and 334 from southern Colorado hospitals.

“Our providers, staff and clinical research teams at UCHealth and the CU Anschutz Medical Campus have made significant advancements in the care of patients with COVID-19 over the past seven months, improving care for patients, developing new treatments, and conducting 38 COVID-19 clinical trials,” said Dr. Jean Kutner, chief medical officer of UCHealth University of Colorado Hospital.

Family members celebrate a COVID survivors' release from UCHealth Memorial Hospital Central.
Family members celebrate a patient’s release from UCHealth Memorial Hospital Central.

The 2,000th patient to recover was able to leave Memorial Hospital Central in Colorado Springs late last week.

“I am honored and humbled to witness the extraordinary care rendered to our COVID-19 patients over the past several months, said Dr. David Steinbruner, chief medical officer of UCHealth Memorial. “To say that this has been a difficult challenge for both the patients and the caregivers does not even begin to describe the heroic efforts that occur every day in our hospitals. It is a testament to the dedication of everyone at UCHealth that so many of those who fell ill from this disease have been able to go home to their families and loved ones. It is a daily reminder that those who undertake this endeavor should always be proud of the work they do and the role they play in healing and helping those in need.”

one of UCHealth's COVID survivors rings a bell as he is discharged.

In northern Colorado, impromptu celebrations occur when a patient leaves a hospital after receiving care for COVID-19.

“Every time another one of our patients with COVID-19 recovers enough to leave our hospitals, it inspires hope,” said Dr. William Neff, chief medical officer of UCHealth’s Medical Center of the Rockies, Greeley Hospital, Poudre Valley Hospital and Yampa Valley Medical Center. “It’s hope for other patients and families who are still fighting this disease, hope for our doctors, nurses and staff who have been steadfast in their dedication to providing exceptional care to these patients day in and day out, and hope for the community that we will get through this together.”

Many patients – especially those who had extended stays in the ICU and who needed the assistance of a ventilator to breathe – receive additional care from post-ICU or pulmonary rehabilitation clinics after leaving the hospital.

UCHealth is now caring for about 65 hospitalized patients across Colorado with either confirmed or possible COVID-19 infections, almost double the number of hospitalizations from late August but still far below the height of the pandemic when UCHealth was actively caring for more than 260 patients hospitalized with COVID-19.

“While our numbers of cases are manageable, we watch these numbers closely as we know a resurgence is possible. Our enhanced safety measures remain in place, and we encourage everyone to be diligent regarding hand hygiene, social distancing and wearing masks,” Reidy added.

With influenza season approaching, UCHealth encourages patients to schedule an appointment for their flu shot either through My Health Connection or by contacting their UCHealth primary care provider directly.