Florida Matters explores Sarasota Memorial's operations as a public hospital amid COVID-19 backlash
"Health freedom" advocates have still complained that the hospital limited experimental treatments such as ivermectin.
Three years after the start of COVID-19, Sarasota Memorial Hospital continues to face criticism for its response to the pandemic, including from some members of its own board.
This week on Florida Matters, we’ll talk about what’s behind the backlash and what this all means for patients and staff at Sarasota Memorial Hospital.
Host Matthew Peddie talks with WUSF reporter Stephanie Colombini to learn more.
An internal review found that COVID-19 patients did better at Sarasota Memorial than most patients at hospitals elsewhere in Florida and the rest of the U.S.
Sarasota Memorial’s death rate was 24 percent lower than the national benchmark, its patients had shorter stays and better survival rates.
"Health freedom" advocates have still complained that the hospital limited experimental treatments such as ivermectin and followed federal pandemic guidelines. And they’ve criticized visitation restrictions for the families of patients and taken issue with the hospital’s stance on vaccinations for its staff.
The hospital says doctors have received abusive messages and death threats.
At a recent board meeting, dozens of people spoke out against the hospital during public comment and challenged its internal review, while others thanked the medical staff for their work.
Peddie also talks with Jay Wolfson — distinguished professor of Public Health, Medicine and Pharmacy at the Morsani College of Medicine — about what Sarasota Memorial’s status as a public hospital means for patient care, especially as this fight over the hospital’s COVID-19 response plays out.
You can listen to the full conversation by clicking on the “Listen” button above. Or you can listen on the WUSF app under “Programs & Podcasts.