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No pediatric ICU beds left in Dallas amid COVID surge, county judge says

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins mentioned Friday there have been no pediatric intensive care unit beds obtainable in Dallas, Texas and there have not been for the previous 24 hours. Surging COVID-19 circumstances because of the Delta variant and hospital staffing shortages in the world could also be in half in charge.

“In Dallas, we have zero ICU beds left for children,” Jenkins mentioned Friday at a digital information convention. “That means if your child’s in a car wreck, if your child has a congenital heart defect or something and needs an ICU bed, or more likely if they have COVID and need an ICU bed, we don’t have one. Your child will wait for another child to die.” 

He mentioned the identical is true for pediatric ICU beds in the 19 surrounding counties as nicely, mentioning that younger sufferers could should be transported farther away for care. 

“Your child will just not get on the ventilator,” he mentioned. “Your child will be CareFlighted to Temple or Oklahoma City or wherever we can find them a bed, but they won’t be getting one here unless one clears and that’s been true for 24 hours.” 

As of August 6, there have been 573 kids aged 0 to 17 hospitalized from COVID-19 issues in Dallas County because the starting of the pandemic, based on weekly information printed by the Dallas County Department of Health. 

HOUSTON, TX – JULY 2: (EDITORIAL USE ONLY) Members of the medical employees relaxation on a stretcher in the COVID-19 intensive care unit on the United Memorial Medical Center on July 2, 2020 in Houston, Texas. COVID-19 circumstances and hospitalizations have spiked since Texas reopened, pushing intensive-care wards to full capability and sparking issues a couple of surge in fatalities because the virus spreads.

/ Getty Images

Jenkins mentioned ICU capability is not significantly better for adults in the world both. 

More than 90% of ICU beds all through Texas are full, leaving solely 321 beds left for the 30 million folks in the state. A physician at Houston’s LBJ Hospital mentioned some sufferers have to attend hours or days earlier than being seen by a well being skilled. 

“The ICUs are full,” Dr. Kunal Sharma, Chief of Emergency Services at LBJ Hospital instructed CBS News’ Janet Shamlian. “Every bed is accounted for.”

North Texas’ ICU capability points are additionally coupled with hospital staffing shortages. State well being officers this week warned lawmakers of the “crisis” which they mentioned is on the verge of “disaster.”

“I am frightened by what is coming,” Dr. Esmaeil Porsa, the CEO for the Harris County hospital district mentioned Tuesday to the Texas Senate Committee on Health and Human Services. He talked about that if COVID-19 circumstances proceed to extend on the rate of which they’re going, “There is no way my hospital is going to be able to handle this. There is no way the region is going to handle this.” 

Dallas Parkland Hospital — one of many nation’s largest — mentioned it wants 500 extra nurses and that some pregnant sufferers have been despatched to different hospitals in order to obtain care because of staffing shortages. 

“I am faced with a workforce who is tired, overworked, and constantly under siege,” Porsa instructed the committee. 

As a method to assist reduce the pressure on struggling hospitals, Jenkins emphasised an order he signed Wednesday requiring public faculties, little one care facilities and companies in Dallas County to develop well being and security plans that embody, at minimal, face masks necessities for workers and guests. Texas Governor Greg Abbott has filed a petition to halt it. 

“Our hospitals and our people desperately need some time to get bed capacity and doctor capacity up so their hospitals won’t be overrun,” he mentioned. 

Earlier this week, Jenkins additionally sued Abbott over the manager order banning masks mandates, and a district judge issued a brief injunction to halt it. A listening to on the momentary injunction in opposition to the ban on masks mandates scheduled for August 24. 

“[It’s] not asking that much of people to wear a mask,” Jenkins mentioned Friday.