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Two-year-old Charlotte McCabe is transported from St. Luke’s in Boise to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City via an Air St. Luke’s plane on Aug. 24.

In late August, 2-year-old Charlotte McCabe started vomiting in the middle of the night, write Melissa Davlin of Idaho Reports and Audrey Dutton of the Idaho Capital Sun. The child's parents,

Megan and Cliff McCabe, initially thought she had a stomach bug. When she began acting listless, they brought her to an urgent care center, where a provider recommended driving her to the emergency room right away. Charlotte was soon moved from Saint Alphonsus in Nampa to St. Luke’s in Boise, which has a pediatric intensive care unit.

After running some labs late that night, doctors at St. Luke’s set up a transfer to Primary Children’s Hospital in Salt Lake City. The toddler was COVID-19 positive, and her liver was failing. Within a couple of hours, Megan and Charlotte were on an Air St. Luke’s plane to Utah.

Charlotte was one of an unknown number of Idaho patients transferred to hospitals outside of the state. The Idaho Capital Sun and Idaho Reports reached out to Idaho hospitals and public agencies for information on the number of COVID-19 patients who have been transferred out of state. On Thursday, the Idaho Capital Sun reported that Idaho is one of two states that do not collect large amounts of data from hospitalizations, including information on transfers.

What we do know: As Idaho hospitals continue to be overrun with unvaccinated COVID patients, providers continue to reach out to health care facilities over state lines, and those patients face additional expenses for the out-of-state transfers. Meanwhile, Idaho has received some blowback for the stress its unvaccinated residents are putting on neighboring states.

You can read the full story here at, or pick up Saturday's Idaho Press; it's on the front page.

Betsy Z. Russell is the Boise bureau chief and state capitol reporter for the Idaho Press and Adams Publishing Group. Follow her on Twitter at @BetsyZRussell.

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