UI hospitals head says virus surge leading to staff burnout

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The head of Iowa’s largest hospital says he’s worried a surge in coronavirus cases is burning out many nurses and other staffers. Suresh Gunasekaran, the chief executive officer of the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics in Iowa City, told reporters Wednesday that the hospital has hundreds of openings not only in nursing, but also for people in food service, housekeeping, maintenance and nursing assistance. The Iowa Department of Public Health says hospitalizations across the state jumped by more than 10% in the past week, to 638, which is the highest number since December. The agency reported 81 additional deaths, bringing the state’s COVID-19 death toll to 6,482.