Elizabeth Egan

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A tent stands outside the emergency wing of the UNC Medical Center on Monday, March 23, 2020. The tent was set up to keep coronavirus patients separated from other patients and hospital staff members.

N.C. hospitals are changing operations and procedures, adapting to COVID-19 spread

Hospitals across the state of North Carolina are taking steps to ensure that they are ready for the peak of the COVID-19 pandemic, expected to come to North Carolina at the end of April. Many hospitals, including UNC Health Care, have limited visiting and nonessential surgeries, but one of the major strains is the lack of personal protective equipment and the long hours now confronting workers. "For the COVID ICU patients, it was just me," Dr. Thomas Bice said. "In addition to the usual thinking about critical care that I had to do, we all had to take on some additional administrative duties, like fielding phone calls or writing notes or writing orders, that are more along the lines of what often the residents take care of."