ODESSA, Texas (Nexstar) – For the first time in weeks, the hospitalization rate is back above the 15 percent threshold outlined by Governor Greg Abbott.
According to data from the Texas Department of State Health Services, Trauma Service Area J, which includes Midland and Odessa, rose to 16.22 percent on Saturday.
Abbott’s executive order states that when a trauma service area climbs above 15 percent hospitalization for more than seven days, businesses must restrict their capacity to 50 percent.
The Permian Basin recently got off the list of areas above the threshold. Back in November, Trauma Service Area J surpassed that number for seven days, restricting capacity. It also prompted former Mayor David Turner to issue a declaration requiring masks in Odessa.
The future of that declaration is currently being discussed with City Council.
Meanwhile, local doctors have pointed to the weeks ahead with caution as Christmas and New Years’ numbers would start to appear soon.
As the numbers roll in, hospitals and local health departments have been administering vaccines to the public. Medical Center Hospital and Odessa Regional Medical Center say they have placed orders for more vaccines and hope to receive them sometime this week.
The Midland Unified Command team will meet at 10 a.m. Tuesday morning and MCH, ORMC has planned updates at 3 p.m. Tuesday and Thursday. Be sure to join us for live coverage of both updates.