• May 30, 2020

Doctor: Peak not this week - Odessa American: Local News

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Doctor: Peak not this week

Surge more likely late April, May

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Posted: Monday, April 6, 2020 4:39 pm

While the Surgeon General warns that a coronavirus pandemic peak this week will be this generation’s ‘Pearl Harbor moment’ for parts of the country, local officials say the Permian Basin is expected to see a rise in coming months.

During a Zoom press conference with Odessa Regional Medical Center and Medical Health Center, MCH President and CEO Russell Tippin said that the Ector County Health Department reported there are now 30 patients who have tested positive with COVID-19 in Ector County.

Tippin said MCH has 14 positives, five of which are in the hospital, four are in critical care on ventilators while one is on a different floor. The rest of the patients are at home, he said. MCH has had 73 negative results and 14 pending. There are 11 persons of interest in the building, four in critical care and seven are on a separate floor.

ORMC President Stacey Brown reported that 75 people have been tested, nine of which have been positive, 60 negatives and six still pending, five are under investigation and two are positive on ventilators.

ORMC Chief Medical Officer Dr. Rohith Saravanan said that in areas of significant community transmission, a cloth mask would be a good thing to use per CDC recommendations. The CDC recommends, “wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain,” like grocery stores and pharmacies.

Saravanan said that the Surgeon Generals remarks about a peak in coronavirus cases does not apply to the Permian Basin – yet.

“If you look at our curve of cases, that is not the part of the curve we are in. That is specific to the exponential rise and the peaking that they are expecting that will happen in the rest of the country that’s heavily affected by this, but it is not here in that full effect yet.”

Saravanan said that without any social distancing, the Permian Basin would expect a higher peak in the end of April or May, but with good social distancing that peak could come a month or two later.

As far as what people can do on an individual level, Saravanan said that although there has been a lot of emphasis on hand sanitizer use, soap and water still works best.

Tippin said that if homeless people need help and are showing COVID-19 symptoms then they would direct some of them to the Ector County Health Department, into MCH care clinics and he said that if things are bad then the emergency room. Saravanan said that he would also direct homeless to the Health Department and said that the emergency room is always open.

CDC cloth face covering guidelines can be found at https://tinyurl.com/uxphvl2 and The University of Texas projection model can be seen at https://tinyurl.com/vapnaz9.

The daily press briefing with local health officials is streamed on both the Odessa American and Medical Center Hospital Facebook pages at 3 p.m. daily.

Odessa, TX

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