MIAMI (WSVN) - As hospitalizations for COVID-19 surge across the state, some healthcare systems are running out of room for patients.

As of Thursday, 13,427 COVID patients have been hospitalized. Healthcare workers at Memorial Regional Hospital expressed their frustration with the uptick in cases.

“The nurses really cry about that, so we try to increase moral,” Jennifer Senior, who works at the hospital, said. “Sometimes, they are very sad. It is not nice to lose a 27-year-old patient, especially one that was not vaccinated.”

As COVID continues to surge in South Florida, hospitalizations are rising again. More than 22,000 new cases of the virus were reported on Friday with an additional 199 deaths.

“Unfortunately, what we see is COVID is coming back a lot stronger, and the patients are coming in younger, sicker and, unfortunately, sometimes they are expiring quicker,” said Bryan James, a physician assistant at Memorial Regional Hospital. “We’re back to square one. That’s why I’m frustrated.”

More than 40% of beds in intensive care units in Florida have been filled with COVID-19 patients.

According to a new study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, those who were previously infected with the virus are twice as likely to be reinfected than someone who gets the vaccine.

“That natural immunity doesn’t seem to be as effective at preventing future infections,” Dr. Cameron Webb, a member of the White House COVID-19 Task Force, said. “That’s going to be a huge difference, especially with this new delta variant.”

Long lines at testing sites have also become a norm once again. 7SkyForce hovered above Markham Park in Sunrise where a line of vehicles could be seen wrapping around the property.

On Thursday, Jackson Health officials announced new rules for unvaccinated employees to follow, including an educational vaccine class and a strict set of guidelines.

“They will not be allowed to enter any Jackson cafeteria, dining room or coffee shop, nor will they be able to take off their N95 masks to eat or drink inside any of our facilities,” said Jackson Health System CEO Carlos Migoya.

Migoya said about 60% of their more than 13,000 employees are currently vaccinated.

He also said employees who get the vaccine before the end of September will be paid a bonus of $150.

The policy changes for unvaccinated employees at Jackson Health are set to go into effect Aug. 23.

“Our positivity rate is now over 13%,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Daniella Levine Cava.

Levine Cava said all non-union employees will be required to show proof of COVID-19 vaccination or undergo weekly testing for the virus.

At the City of Miami, all employees will be required to wear a mask until they show proof of vaccination.

Meanwhile, Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis spoke about mask mandates at a media conference in Port St. Lucie.

“In terms of imposing any restrictions, that’s not happening in Florida,” he said. “It’s harmful, it’s destructive, it does not work.”

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