2 Texas ERs temporarily shut down as US Covid-19 hospitalization and death rates double in 2 weeks

2 Texas ERs temporarily shut down as US Covid-19 hospitalization and death rates double in 2 weeks

Posted: Aug 10, 2021 12:01 AM
Updated: Aug 10, 2021 12:01 AM

The crush of patients infected with the Delta variant is affecting hospitals nationwide. Now some Texans trying to get care at their nearest emergency room will have to go elsewhere.

Hunt Regional Medical Center at Commerce said its ER is temporarily closing "due to a critical Covid surge."

Those suffering a medical emergency should "proceed to the nearest emergency room in Greenville or Quinlan," the hospital said.

Texas Health Hospital in Rockwall said in its temporary ER closure would allow medical staff to transfer to the hospital's main campus, where they "will provide care related to the pandemic," according to the hospital's website.

The US is now averaging more than 108,000 Covid-19 cases per day over the past week -- the highest in about six months, according to data from Johns Hopkins University.

Rates of hospitalizations and deaths have almost doubled in the past two weeks. More than 67,000 people are hospitalized with Covid-19, according to data from the Department of Health and Human Services.

In Florida, the hospitalization rate is more than triple the national rate. There are more than 65 people hospitalized with Covid-19 for every 100,000 people in Florida, about one out of every 1,500 state residents. Throughout the United States, about 21 people are hospitalized with Covid-19 for every 100,000 people.

In Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi, hospitalization rates are more than double the national number.

Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson said Monday that hospitalizations for Covid-19 are at an all-time high and there are only eight available intensive care unit beds in the state.

And every day, about 514 Americans are dying from Covid-19, according to Johns Hopkins.

The vast majority of Covid-19 hospitalizations and deaths are among those not fully vaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

More than 99.99% of people who are fully vaccinated against Covid-19 have not had a breakthrough case resulting in hospitalization or death, a CNN analysis of new CDC data suggests.

As of August 2, more than 164 million people in the US were fully vaccinated, according to CDC data. Fewer than 0.005% of those vaccinated -- or 7,101 people -- were hospitalized with Covid-19, and less than 0.001% of them -- 1,507 people -- died from Covid-19.

About 74% of reported breakthrough infections were among seniors ages 65 or older, according to the CDC.

GOP governor: 'Run to the fire and get vaccinated'

With all the data and knowledge, 'You're taking a hell of a risk if you're not vaccinated," West Virginia Gov. Jim Justice said Monday.

"I don't know why in the world we would not run ... to get our kids vaccinated," the governor said, referring to those ages 12 and older, the youngest age group eligible for the vaccine.

"And I don't know why in the world if you're not vaccinated yourself, you wouldn't be running today, right this moment, to get vaccinated with all this information that's out there in front of you."

Justice said he doesn't want to issue a mask mandate, but might have to do so if the crisis gets worse.

"We're on a collision course here," the Republican governor said.

"I am telling you as your governor, as your friend, as the person that you really trusted: Right now, you need to put this as a No. 1 priority in your life and run to the fire and get vaccinated."

Most of the US has 'high' or 'substantial' transmission

More than 98% of the US population lives in a county where people should now be wearing a mask in indoor public places, according to guidance from the CDC.

Those in counties with "high" or "substantial" coronavirus transmission should mask up indoors, the CDC said.

"We're seeing severely increasing rates" of new infections, said Michael Sweat, team leader of the Covid-19 Epidemiology Intelligence Project at the Medical University of South Carolina.

"In early July, we were down to the lowest we've been since the beginning (of the pandemic)," he said.

"Now, just within a couple of weeks, we are getting close to the maximum number of cases we've had from the beginning."

Of those getting hospitalized, more than 90% are not vaccinated -- mirroring national statistics from the CDC.

"But we're also seeing younger patients than we have seen in the past," Sweat said.

"I believe this is largely because vaccination rates were quite high among people 60 and over. But we are seeing many teens. We're seeing some pediatric cases. So it is shifting from what we've seen before."

Get vaccinated before another variant arises, Fauci says

The longer a virus spreads and replicates among unvaccinated people, the more chances it has to mutate.

And when mutations give the virus an advantage, more aggressive variants can emerge -- such as ones that could evade vaccines.

"Then all of us who are protected against Delta may not be protected against" some other variant, Dr. Anthony Fauci said in a Q&A with USA Today published Sunday.

If an overwhelming majority of the population is vaccinated, the virus will disappear in the country, said the director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

But having only a partially vaccinated population means smoldering levels of infection will carry into the fall, Fauci told USA Today. Then Covid-19 infections could be confused with the flu this winter and pick back up in the spring.

And if the rest of the world isn't vaccinated over the next couple of years, more circulation could mean more variants, Fauci warned.

In many parts of the country, particularly the South, hospitalizations are surging. Louisiana set a new record for Covid-19 hospitalizations last week. Florida's hospitalizations recently jumped 13% over the previous peak in 2020. And a hospital in Houston said Sunday morning there are no more beds left in the facility.

"Over the last 12 hours, we have lost more patients than ... in the last five to six weeks," Houston's United Memorial Medical Center Chief of Staff Dr. Joseph Varon said.

Experts not worried about vaccine protection yet

While some have questioned the risk of the emerging Lambda (C.37) variant, researchers aren't yet seriously concerned about current vaccines not working against the Lambda nor Delta variants, Dr. Francis Collins, director of the National Institutes of Health, told ABC on Sunday.

"We all worry about the day when a variant arrives that the vaccines stop working as well," Collins said. "The best way to reduce that from happening is to reduce the number of infections. That's how variants happen.

"All the more reason why we should be doing everything possible to cut back the wild spread of Delta so we don't get something even more dangerous."

But public health officials are watching vaccine efficacy closely, including how protection might wane over time, Fauci told CNN.

When data shows protection goes below a certain threshold, health officials will recommend boosters for the general population, Fauci said Sunday.

Pfizer has said its Covid-19 vaccine appears to stay 84% effective after six months.

Moderna said last week its Covid-19 vaccine showed 93% efficacy against symptomatic disease through six months.

Boosters could come too late for immunocompromised people

Concerns over vaccine protection are different for people who are immunocompromised, have had a transplant or are undergoing cancer therapy.

"We know for sure that they never did get an adequate response -- most of them, not all of them, but most of them," Fauci said.

"We need to look at them in a different light than the durability for a normal person, which means that we will almost certainly be boosting those people before we boost the general population that's been vaccinated."

Research published in JAMA Network Open estimates that 6 million people in the US are taking immunosuppressants that could interfere with the vaccine -- a number the researchers say is likely an underestimate.

The FDA is moving quickly to decide on Covid-19 vaccine boosters for people with compromised immune systems, and a decision could come sometime before early September, a Biden administration official told CNN.

Even if the decision comes soon, it may not be soon enough for people who are immunocompromised amid the spread of the Delta variant, according to Dr. Scott Gottlieb, former commissioner of the FDA.

"Because by the time you actually make that decision ... and you start operationalizing a booster campaign, you're talking about maybe late October if the decision comes in September, that you can start getting a sizeable number of people boosted," Gottlieb told CBS on Sunday.

"It takes time to get that stood up and get people into the doctors' offices to get injections. And it will take a couple of weeks for the immunity to mature."

The-CNN-Wire
™ & © 2021 Cable News Network, Inc., a WarnerMedia Company. All rights reserved.

Terre Haute
Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 54° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 52°
Robinson
Cloudy
50° wxIcon
Hi: 55° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 50°
Indianapolis
Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 52°
Rockville
Cloudy
53° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 53°
Casey
Cloudy
53° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 53°
Brazil
Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 52°
Marshall
Cloudy
52° wxIcon
Hi: 53° Lo: 51°
Feels Like: 52°
Windy and cool for the rest of the day!
WTHI Planner
WTHI Temps
WTHI Radar

Latest Video

Image

All You Need to Know for Monday

Image

Monday: Scattered showers, cooler. High: 57

Image

Series Concert

Image

Candles Holocaust Museum remembers Mickey Kor

Image

Sunday Night: Showers and thunderstorms, strong storms possible. Low: 53°

Image

Q&A held to answer any questions about COVID-19 vaccine

Image

Fall Fest Trunk or Treat

Image

Rose Hulman Series Concert

Image

Sunday: Morning rain, then warm and breezy. High 73°

Image

haunted halls YMCA

WTHI Events

 

Illinois Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 7 p.m. CT)

Cases: 1680908

Reported Deaths: 28023
CountyCasesDeaths
Cook63626111214
DuPage1086211379
Will915681128
Lake802871090
Kane68604874
Winnebago41222561
Madison40178598
St. Clair36326599
McHenry34856331
Champaign27087197
Peoria26991368
Sangamon25818287
McLean23073220
Tazewell20689331
Rock Island18919362
Kankakee17959249
Kendall16268114
Macon15344252
LaSalle15078287
Vermilion14453201
Adams13188152
DeKalb12201134
Williamson12091175
Whiteside8328183
Jackson810494
Boone796583
Coles7918125
Ogle759290
Grundy741386
Franklin7339115
Knox7321169
Clinton7136102
Macoupin6988106
Marion6935144
Henry666177
Effingham6639100
Jefferson6573143
Livingston599498
Stephenson587893
Woodford578492
Randolph5563100
Christian536682
Fulton527977
Monroe5258103
Morgan5088100
Logan495675
Montgomery492882
Lee479760
Bureau444291
Saline436169
Perry433975
Fayette432464
Iroquois422577
McDonough374861
Shelby349848
Jersey336953
Lawrence335533
Crawford333730
Douglas328437
Union307748
Wayne304863
White280833
Richland280157
Hancock274435
Clark266940
Cass266531
Pike265658
Edgar260649
Clay259854
Bond257525
Ford246059
Warren244866
Carroll237138
Moultrie236333
Johnson229732
Wabash217319
Jo Daviess216629
Massac216551
Mason214452
Washington212928
De Witt206530
Greene205640
Mercer205036
Piatt202814
Cumberland190126
Menard172513
Jasper161621
Marshall141721
Hamilton134222
Schuyler108810
Brown106610
Pulaski104612
Edwards104118
Stark81828
Gallatin7939
Alexander73212
Scott7126
Henderson70914
Calhoun6932
Hardin60916
Putnam5674
Pope5566
Unassigned1342433
Out of IL140

Indiana Coronavirus Cases

(Widget updates once daily at 8 p.m. ET)

Cases: 1007681

Reported Deaths: 16470
CountyCasesDeaths
Marion1355212121
Lake664101166
Allen57993801
Hamilton46350465
St. Joseph44397615
Elkhart35949510
Vanderburgh32251480
Tippecanoe27933260
Johnson25107445
Hendricks23897359
Porter22929365
Madison18748409
Clark18557252
Vigo17479303
Monroe15263200
LaPorte15173250
Delaware15073263
Howard14748290
Kosciusko12348148
Hancock11728176
Bartholomew11639180
Warrick11292189
Floyd11108215
Wayne10986253
Grant10082220
Morgan9472176
Boone8926115
Dubois8271131
Henry8229152
Dearborn822393
Noble8031106
Marshall7939135
Cass7546121
Lawrence7457171
Shelby7189119
Jackson698289
Gibson6597115
Harrison649192
Knox6421106
Huntington6395100
DeKalb632399
Montgomery6264111
Miami593398
Putnam581278
Clinton576171
Whitley565755
Steuben562576
Wabash5332104
Jasper532079
Jefferson511297
Ripley500586
Adams482576
Daviess4677114
Scott438974
Greene425196
Wells424888
Clay423360
White418764
Decatur4169102
Fayette406587
Jennings387361
Posey376644
Washington359151
LaGrange359078
Randolph3452100
Spencer340243
Fountain335760
Sullivan329452
Starke317171
Owen314771
Fulton312667
Orange293664
Jay284645
Franklin265643
Perry265452
Rush262432
Carroll261934
Vermillion258654
Parke231426
Pike229243
Tipton228159
Blackford193142
Pulaski183757
Crawford159823
Newton158348
Benton150617
Brown146747
Martin138719
Switzerland135011
Warren121116
Union107016
Ohio84613
Unassigned0540