RAPID CITY, S.D. (KELO) — A surge in COVID-19 patients has forced Monument Health in the Black Hills area to equip additional patients rooms for intensive care patients, the health system said today.

“As of this morning, Monument Health is treating 78 hospitalized COVID-19 patients throughout the health system, nearly twice the number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients from a week ago and up from just five hospitalized COVID-19 patients a month ago,” the health system said in a news release.

The vast majority of those hospitalized patients are unvaccinated, according to the health system.

In addition to equipping more patient rooms to care for intensive care patients, the health system is temporarily shifting nurses and caregivers from other departments to help hospitals.

“Other measures are under consideration and we will continue to adjust our operations to meet the needs of our communities,” the release said.