News Texas and Florida hospitals near collapse due to increased...

Texas and Florida hospitals near collapse due to increased coronavirus cases

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Symptom Review Row, at the entrance to the Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami (Reuters)

Some hospitals in the states of Texas and Florida are about to run out of beds for coronavirus sufferers, as authorities rush to take steps to curb the spread and increase health capacity.

Although the average age of infections in the last few weeks in the United States has dropped considerably compared to that of the first months of the year, they could inevitably need medical attention in the next few days when the infection symptoms worsen, which is why makes it urgent to improve the care system to avoid collapse.

Total, Of the 69,000 beds available throughout Texas, 55,800 are occupied, that is to say almost 81 percent, according to data from this Monday from the state Department of Health.

This Monday, the mayors of the cities of San Antonio and Austin and the Alderman of Miami-Dade County (Florida) warned that hospitals are on the edge and beds are running out in intensive care units (ICUs). “Time is running out now in terms of the capacity of our hospitals in San Antonio, just like in many of the other big cities in Texas,” he told the network. CNN San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg.

The politician warned that if the cases continue to grow at the current rate, San Antonio “only has a week to run out of hospital beds and exhaust the capacity of intensive care units”.

In Texas, the big cities – mostly governed by Democratic mayors – are fighting a battle against the state’s governor, the Republican Greg Abbott, who refuses to take strict measures against the virus and does not allow local authorities to adopt them either.

The collapse is already near at hand in Texas hospitals, as healthcare personnel exhaust efforts to treat patients (Reuters)
The collapse is already near at hand in Texas hospitals, as healthcare personnel exhaust efforts to treat patients (Reuters)

In this regard, the mayor of Austin, Democrat Steve Adler, asked Abott on Monday to restore autonomy to the cities and allow them to dictate their own measures to contain the disease. Adler is shuffling to issue a “stay-at-home order” to force residents to quarantine, thereby easing pressure on area hospitals.

In recent days, the cities of Houston and Fort Worth have also expressed concern about the lack of beds, while in the bordering Rio Grande valley 10 of the 12 hospitals have already reached their limit, since the number of admissions has doubled in the last two weeks.

Florida, the same concern

Hospitalizations have been on the rise across the state, with nearly 1,700 patients admitted in the past seven days, compared with 1,200 in the prior week. In the St. Petersburg area, five hospitals ran out of space in their intensive care units, authorities said.

Miami-Dade, the epicenter of the epidemic in Florida, has an 80% occupation in intensive care and reported that there are currently more than 1,600 coronavirus patients hospitalized, more than double that of two weeks ago. Miami Baptist Hospital only has four of its 88 ICU beds available.

If the increase continues at this rate, we will have no respirators or rooms availableSaid Dr. David De La Zerda, a respiratory specialist at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami.

Warnings and recommendations at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami-Dade (Reuters)
Warnings and recommendations at Jackson Memorial Hospital in Miami-Dade (Reuters)

Meanwhile, the increase in cases in Florida has also put hospitals in small counties like Clay or St. Lucie in check, where only 4 percent of beds in intensive care units are free.

Due to the seriousness of the situation, the mayor of Miami-Dade County, Carlos Giménez, announced this Monday that from July 8 all restaurants will be closed (except for home delivery or pick up), as well as dance halls, banquet facilities, gyms, party venues, and short-term rentals, such as Airbnb. “We want to ensure that our hospitals continue to have the number of workers necessary to save lives,” said Giménez in a statement.

In the last 24 hours, Florida registered 6,336 new infections, a figure that is a slight improvement over the daily records of 10,000 cases in the last two days. However, Governor Ron DeSantis, aligned with Donald Trump, has avoided taking measures that contradict the positions of the White House.

14 STATES WITH RECORD FIGURES

In the last five days, 14 of the 50 states in the country, including Florida, have recorded records in the daily number of new infections and in total the US announced 250,000 new cases, the equivalent of the total population of Buffalo (New York).

In addition, Nevada and Arizona have seen the highest number of hospitalizations for the virus in recent days.

In Nevada, hospitals are at 68 percent of capacity; while in Arizona, 84 percent of the beds are full and the situation is more serious in the ucis, at 89 percent, according to official data from the two states.

For the past month, the virus has been hitting the southern and western states of the United States, the first to reopen their economies; while eastern cities – such as Boston, New York, and Washington DC – now enjoy lower numbers.

(With information from EFE and AP)

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