North Shore man with congestive heart failure forced to wait a week to get into hospital


HONOLULU (KHON2) — Hospitals across the state have been warning that COVID patients are pushing their capacity to the limit.

The situation is putting others who need care in danger.

Find more COVID-19 news: cases, vaccinations on our Coronavirus News page

A North Shore man experienced that first hand.

North Shore resident Jack Reid has congestive heart failure and has had several heart attacks over the years.

Last Sunday he started having heart palpitations.

“I felt it in my chest,” Reid said. “Couldn’t even walk down the stairs of my house.”

He didn’t want to go to the hospital due to the coronavirus situation.

He used his heart monitoring device to send the data to his doctor who told him to get to the hospital immediately.

He went to Queen’s West.

“They have been trying to get me in the Queen’s downtown where the cath lab is,” Reid explained. “They have no room for me. So they can’t take me.”

KHON2 asked The Queen’s Health Systems about Reid’s case. The hospital says its Punchbowl facility is near capacity but is able to accept priority patients for things like heart attacks, trauma, and stroke.

Some non-emergency procedures have also been postponed there.

“I’m scared,” Reid said. “I’m really scared. Because of this, I could die right here without ever seeing my wife again. Without seeing my kids, without seeing my grandkids. I had a great grandson born yesterday morning that I might never see.”

Late afternoon on Aug. 17 after a week of waiting, the hospital did find space for Reid to be transferred and receive his heart screening.

He is fully vaccinated, and has a message for those who are not.

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“Please go get vaccinated,” Reid urged. “It’s free. It doesn’t cost anything for protect yourself. Protect your family, protect your loved ones, protect the aloha of the islands, please.”

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