“We are refreshed to see the fact that we have blunted admissions a little bit, but we are certainly not in a decline situation but a plateau situation,” Escott said at a July 14 Travis County Commissioners Court meeting.
With the current rate of hospital admissions, Escott said Austin-area hospitals are stressed, and while Travis County is presently hovering at the upper Stage 4 coronavirus risk, limited intensive care unit capacity could soon push risk to Stage 5.
“We are at that threshold where substantial increases in ICU patients may push us over the edge in terms of being able to adequately care for folks," he said.
Nursing home cases, meanwhile, are not plateauing. Two hundred forty new cases in local nursing homes have been reported in the past week, a change from several weeks past when outbreaks among long-term senior care facilities were thought to be receding.
In the past day, Austin Public Health has received confirmation of 553 new COVID-19 cases in Travis County. Seventy-four coronavirus patients have been admitted to hospitals in the past 24 hours, and seven individuals have died from the virus.