Rolling blackouts affect patient care at Rockwall hospital

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by CYNTHIA VEGA

WFAA

Posted on February 2, 2011 at 2:31 PM

Updated Wednesday, Feb 2 at 2:31 PM

ROCKWALL — Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Rockwall relied on an emergency generator to provide heat and electricity during rolling power blackouts on Wednesday morning.

Hospital officials said the power had been flickering on and off since early this morning.

One concerned mom, Jenny Green, said she was worried that her daughter's room was getting too cold. She said it felt no warmer than 60 degrees and had gotten colder.

Green said her daughter, Mary Green, just had surgery after she gave birth Tuesday night.

The grandmother was also worried about her new grandson, Michael, who weighed in at a tiny five pounds, 11 ounces.

"We had the baby this morning, but we asked them to take the baby back to the nursery because it was entirely too cold in there," said Jenny Green. "I have the bathroom door open with the heat lamp to keep it warm." 

The vice president for patient care said hospital officials have found some rooms are colder than others, and they are directing heat that way. Otherwise, the backup generator is providing ample heat and electricity.

She said patient care had not suffered.

However, the hospital official said there was some concern about how long the rolling outages will last. The hospital is choosing not to do elective surgeries on Wednesday.

Hospital officials said the facility is working closely with its energy provider and Oncor, and is satisfied with the response.

Presbyterian Hospital of Dallas has also decided not to perform elective surgeries on Wednesday. Those surgeries will be rescheduled for Thursday or Friday.

E-mail  cvega@wfaa.com

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