MIDLAND, Texas (Nexstar)- Midland memorial Hospital is reporting a new record high for patients hospitalized with COVID-19.
In a news conference Wednesday, the hospital said there are 121 patients in its care. That previous record was 116.
With a total census of 239, more than half of the patients in the hospital are there because of coronavirus. Of those, 28 are on a ventilator.
This is putting a strain on the hospital, especially since they are operating with fewer staff than in previous surges. And the positivity rate remains high, which means hospitalization rates will also remain high in the coming weeks.
Chief Medical Officer Dr. Larry Wilson says the Health Department is tracking the number of positive tests daily. There is a delay, however, in the case counts, as the Health Department is also struggling with a lack of staff. In recent weeks, Midland was reporting about 150 positive cases per day. The most recent data shows a jump from that to 278 and 343 case per day. Those numbers are from August 16 and 17. The most recent data has not yet been sorted through.
Adding to the strain, Chief Executive Officer Russell Meyers said most patients are unvaccinated.
“Very consistently, since the beginning of this surge, eighty-eight, ninety, ninety-two percent of the population we’re serving with COVID are unvaccinated people,” Meyers said.
In all, Midland has seen only 170 breakthrough cases among vaccinated people since March, when vaccination efforts began.
As the Delta variant surge continues, hospital staff continue to urge people to get vaccinated, and for those who will not, they are asking the community to continue with mitigation efforts; wear a mask, wash your hands, maintain social distancing.