Springfield hospital reopens outdoor unit for COVID-19, flu

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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (AP) — A hospital in Springfield is reopening an outdoor unit to help it treat COVID-19 and flu patients.

Mercy Hospital says the trailer outside its emergency room is intended to keep patients with respiratory issues away from patients inside the hospital while also treating them more quickly.

The unit is opening as Missouri hospitals respond to a continued increase in COVID-19 hospitalizations and cases. State health department data shows 1,527 people were hospitalized with suspected or confirmed cases of COVID-19 as of Tuesday.

On Wednesday, state health officials had confirmed 174,632 cases since the pandemic began, an increase of 1,915 from Tuesday. Missouri also has recorded 2,870 deaths, 32 more than Tuesday.

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