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Governor: Texas still has plenty of hospital beds for COVID-19 patients

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott addressed the state Tuesday to assure Texans “abundant hospital capacity exists” to treat COVID-19 patients.
Nearly 15,000 hospital beds are available in the state of Texas, according to Gov. Greg Abbot....
Nearly 15,000 hospital beds are available in the state of Texas, according to Gov. Greg Abbot. More than 1,600 ICU beds are also available for COVID-19 patients to use if necessary.(KCRG)
Updated: Jun. 16, 2020 at 10:40 PM CDT
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AUSTIN, Texas (KBTX) - Texas Gov. Greg Abbott addressed the state Tuesday to assure Texans “abundant hospital capacity exists” to treat COVID-19 patients.

Dr. John Zerwas, the executive vice chancellor for health affairs of the University of Texas System said the state still has about 15,000 available hospital beds for COVID patients experiencing the more severe symptoms of the illness.

“We have an incredibly robust healthcare system in the state of Texas,” Zerwas said. “Our healthcare professionals are able to serve COVID patients and address other health issues.”

Zerwas outlined the five levels of care that are available in Texas for COVID-19 patients, ranging from Level 5 to level 1. He said the Lone Star State is still at Level 5, or the safest level. That means Texas hospitals are well below their capacity of hospital beds that are available for COVID-19 patients. Level 4 would mean that hospitals would have to increase capacity by upgrading other rooms to accommodate COVID-19 patients.

If the levels increase in severity, communities would need to use long-term acute care hospitals, nursing homes, medical office buildings, etc. At Level 1, which is the most severe case, cities and counties would have to bring in field hospitals like the one the Texas National Guard set up in the Dallas area and later took down and set them up in arenas and convention centers.

Thousands of additional available beds could quickly be made available if the state of Texas is forced to go to Level 4 or Level 3, Zerwas said.

The governor said that COVID-19 still exists in Texas, the United States, and the world. He added it will remain a health hazard until healthcare professionals come up with some type of vaccine or another way to effectively treat the illness.

To see how your area is doing with hospital capacity click here and go to the tab at the very bottom of the page labeled “Hospitals-Regional”. The Bryan-College Station area is Trauma Service Area N. This feature works best on a desktop computer.

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