Houston's Texas Medical Center: COVID-19 hospitalizations down, though deaths remain up

Texas Medical Center has a ways to go before it is out of the woods, but some key COVID-19 metrics are showing signs of improvement.

COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 27 are at 2,060, down more than 11% compared to a week ago when Texas Medical Center hospitals across nine counties in the Greater Houston area reported 2,327 virus patients, according to the medical center’s public data reports.

Of note is that while the number of daily new Texas Medical Center patients with the coronavirus-caused disease match where they were in early to mid-June—202 new patients on July 27—the trend has been sloping downward since July 9, when the medical center reported 424 new cases.

The number of coronavirus patients occupying intensive care units, however, has seen a 3% bump since last week, with numbers now reaching 682 patients, though the curve has stopped increasing like it was a couple of weeks ago and has evened out.

Fewer COVID-19 patients are occupying non-ICU beds than they were a week ago—at 1,378—while numbers have dropped 23% since July 13. This comes as the medical center reports a 16% increase in coronavirus patient discharges compared to last week.

However, total deaths related to COVID-19 continue to climb at Texas Medical Center, with 276 more deaths caused by the coronavirus since July 20, a reported 21% spike week over week.

ICU bed capacity still remains at surge levels, however, with 1,408 ICU beds in use by COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients out of 1,703 total available. Should ICU patient numbers eclipse surge capacity, Texas Medical Center would need to enter Phase 3 in its planning protocol, which would mean providing additional temporary ICU capacity with 504 more beds.
By Hunter Marrow
Hunter Marrow came to Community Impact Newspaper in January 2020. Before that, Hunter covered local news in Ontario, OR for three years, covering municipal issues, crime, and education across Malheur County and across the border into Idaho.


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