The Delta variant is spreading rapidly among a large portion of the incoming Texas unvaccinated population The number of confirmed and suspected COVID-19 adult and pediatric hospitalizations has skyrocketed in recent weeks, according to the president of Texas Medical Center.
Gov. Greg Abbott’s strategy to fight the pandemic has focused primarily on blocking local mandates and committing to protecting the “rights of the unvaccinated.”
In his words, Texas “is past the time of government mandates.” In fact, Abbott announced that children will go back to school in person this fall, with no masks or vaccinal warrants for them or school members.
Current status of COVID-19 in Texas
The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention now considers virtually all of Texas an area of high virus transmission.
The Texas State Department of Health reported 10,772 new cases and 194 deaths in the past 24 hours.
18% of all new cases so far in August are children.
Is it safe to travel to Houston?
The number of people testing positive for COVID-19 in Houston is increasing monthly. As of today, the test positivity rate is 15.1 percent.
In June, the average number of hospital admissions was over 300 per week. Today, the city is seeing no less than 420.
44% of Houstonians have not been vaccinated and represent the vast majority of people attending emergency rooms and ICUs.
That means getting vaccinated can make the difference between a safe or unsafe trip to Houston.
Texas hospital capacity
Texas has an extremely high density of clinical patient care facilities and a long tradition of medical research that attracts patients from all over the world.
In fact, Texas Medical Center is the largest “medical city” in the world and has many ICU beds to serve COVID patients.
The number of beds is not the problem in Texas. William McKeon, president and CEO of Texas Medical Center, points to a lack of nurses with the right skills in respiratory therapy as the biggest problem Texas is facing.
“In the ICU, these COVID patients are typically inverted. Some wear respirators. The sickest of the sick will be on an ECMO. It takes real training for technicians, nurses and doctors to manage physical therapy. ” says the CEO.
But it’s not that Texas didn’t have enough professional medical personnel to deal with the threat. After 18 months in the Pandemic, the team is exhausted and experiencing PTSD after seeing thousands of people die during their surveillance.
Source: Houston Chronicle
Why travel to Texas in times of pandemic?
As the second largest state in the US behind Alaska, Texas is like a country unto itself.
Texas is extremely diverse in its offer to visitors. The southern state is blessed with a range of dramatically diverse climates and landscapes – such as Gulf Coast beaches, pine forests and deserts.
It’s food! – Texas offers a mix of Native American, Mexican and American cuisine and every dish is huge!