Texas reported 5,404 new cases of COVID-19 Sunday with almost 2,000 of those cases coming from the El Paso area.
Hospitals across the state, including North Texas, have received patients in an effort to help El Paso area hospitals with capacity and staffing issues.
“From the El Paso area, we’ve received five patients in the last couple of weeks,” DFW Hospital Council President Stephen Love said. “What you reach is a capacity issue where it is best to divert some patients and they weren’t all COVID-19 patients that were diverted.”
The latest news from around North Texas.
“What they try to do, is in the emergency room, make the determination of who would be a patient that would be a candidate that could be sent to other parts of the state,” Love explained.
According to Love, North Texas hospitals are also keeping a close watch on rising COVID-19 cases.
“I talked to one of our hospitals [Friday] morning and in their emergency room [Thursday] night, they admitted 22 COVID-19 patients and they think a lot of that potentially is directly related back to Halloween parties and things that they did,” Love said. “We are concerned. We’re very concerned.”
Love said North Texas hospitals have COVID-19 surge plans.
“Hospitals have elaborate surge plans and they try to expand on their own campus first,” Love said. “They try to expand the bed capacity. They try to look at things like recovery rooms and convert them to temporary ICU units. They look at those types of things that they can do to handle a surge.”
“Phase two is do you have the staff? You can have the increased capacity, but you have got to have the staff to cover those beds,” Love added. “You stop and think that our staff has been at this since March. They are tired. They really have done tremendous work. They are healthcare heroes.”
Health officials ask residents to continue taking precautions in the weeks to come.
“We’ve got Thanksgiving coming up, cooler weather. I’m not trying to be doom and gloom,” Love said. “I’m just saying wear your mask, stay out of large crowds and get your flu shot.”
Coronavirus Cases in Texas
Locations on the map are approximate county locations and are not intended to identify where any infected people live.
Case data pulled from a variety of sources including county health departments, Texas Department of State Health Services, KXAN-TV in Austin and KPRC-TV in Houston.