WORCESTER, Mass. - UMass Memorial Medical Center has received state Public Health Council approval to add 91 inpatient beds.

The hospital system said the beds are being added to the university and medical campuses to expand its capacity to care for more patients.

UMass Memorial Medical Center president Michael Gustafson said the hospital has about 800 beds and 500 of them are for adult med-surge patients. These additional 91 beds are about a 19% increase. 

"91 beds are desperately needed," Gustafson said. "We have many days that we are starting days with patients waiting in our emergency departments waiting for beds. So this will provide a great relief and also the ability for us to get more patients transfered in to the medical center from outlying hospitals."

Services offered will include treatment for respiratory infection, pneumonia and heart failure. UMass Memorial Health said the increase will allow them to relieve congestion, improve the emergency department and place patients in need of acute inpatient care in the best setting.