People

Patients Swamp Sun Belt Hospitals With Covid-19 on a Rampage

The coronavirus pandemic’s merciless march through the Sun Belt is killing record numbers of Americans there, overrunning hospitals and exhausting supplies. But even as some leaders fall ill themselves, they have failed to contain the disease’s spread.

On Thursday, Governor Ron DeSantis offered no new restrictions as Florida joined Texas and California in reporting record deaths. Arizona Governor Doug Ducey promised more testing and limited restaurant capacity after the state announced the most cases in six days. In Mississippi, where many lawmakers had resisted wearing masks in the Capitol, 26 of them tested positive, including the leaders of both legislative chambers.

YOU MIGHT LIKE

New U.S. virus cases topped 60,000 in a day for the first time Thursday, with the national total above 3.1 million. And in states where the disease rages, a nightmarish paralysis hit institutions filling with the sick and dying. Quinn Snyder, an emergency physician in Mesa, near Phoenix, said patients were flooding in from other parts of Arizona and as far as New Mexico as smaller hospitals near the saturation point.

“We’ve been discussing putting people in fluoroscopy suites, in radiology suites, everything to housing people in tents,” Snyder said. “We’re rearranging deck chairs on the Titanic as we speak.”

Car waits in line at a Covid-19 testing site in Miami Gardens, Florida, on July 6.

The daunting numbers and reports of shortages make clear that state and federal governments have failed to prepare for the new onslaught four months after it emerged. Vivid videos and reports of suffering in the Northeast didn’t move Sun Belt states, many run by Republicans who support President Donald Trump, to prepare adequately.

Even when states take measures to tamp down the outbreaks, it takes time to see the effects. So the rising case and death counts are likely to continue.

“We’re not in a good situation. That may be a little too gentle. Probably what I really think is not fit to print,” said Jaline Gerardin, an expert in disease modeling and an assistant professor of preventive medicine in epidemiology at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. “I’m very worried.”

Death Record

In Florida, where 120 more deaths were reported Thursday, the daily record went unmentioned at DeSantis’s media briefing in Jacksonville. Instead, he used the news conference to insist the state had to move the economy forward and reopen schools next month, as Trump has demanded.

“At the end of the day, we need our society to function,” DeSantis said. “We need our society to continue to move forward. We can take steps to be able to minimize risk when you’re talking about coronavirus, but we can’t just leave society on the mat.”

Florida’s new hospitalizations and the rate at which residents are testing positive also jumped sharply, and the number of virus patients on ventilators continued to climb in Miami-Dade, the most populous Florida county.

“Some of us are becoming a little speechless here at the status we’re in now,” said Jill Roberts, an associate professor at the University of South Florida College of Public Health who specializes in emerging diseases. “We’re in bad shape here.”

Houston Outbreak

Texas Covid-19 deaths topped 100 for the first time and rose 3.7% to a cumulative 2,918.

New cases are quickly filling beds in intensive-care units in Houston, site of the state’s worst outbreak. Houston’s Texas Medical Center hospitals filled up all ICU beds generally available last week and began tapping converted beds according to its crisis plan. As of Thursday, 17% of Phase 1 surge capacity had been filled, up from 9% the day before, the center reported.

The swelling numbers may presage widespread mortality, said Vivian Ho, a health economist at Rice University in Houston.

“I view deaths as sort of three weeks after, at the earliest, the unsafe behavior, and we just recently closed bars,” said Ho. “I would expect the number of deaths to rise more.”

Governor Greg Abbott expressed concern about the outbreak’s rapid advance in an interview on a Houston Fox television channel. “Today, for the first day, we had more than 100 deaths because of Covid,” he said. “And I gotta tell you, I think the numbers are going to look worse as we go into next week, and we need to make sure that there’s going to be plenty of hospital beds available in the Houston area.”

While health professionals are nearly unanimous in their prescriptions for containing Covid — mandating masks, limiting movements and policing economic activity — few state officials have been eager to return to widespread lockdowns. Circumstances are forcing some to reconsider.

In Maricopa County, Arizona’s most populous, 1 in 4 virus tests is positive, its health department tweeted Thursday. The state has seen a 50% increase in cases since June 21, Governor Ducey said Thursday. “We have had a brutal June,” he said.

On June 29, Ducey shut down bars, gyms, nightclubs and other businesses. Now, the state will limit indoor dining to less than 50% occupancy.

Categories
People
3 Comments on this post.
  • Arielle Lancaster
    12 July 2020 at 4:43 pm
    Leave a Reply

    In places like Japan, where wearing a mask is NO BIG DEAL, they have kept the Covid-19 count very low. Doesn’t that PROVE, to the people in America, that refuse to wear a mask, that wearing a mask actually HEPS to prevent the
    spread of the disease ?

  • Dale
    12 July 2020 at 7:29 pm
    Leave a Reply

    And of course, these increases can have nothing to do with the riots and protests over the last month…

  • Terry
    16 July 2020 at 9:29 pm
    Leave a Reply

    Folks the corona virus is the common cold an enfluenza get over it no symptoms do not test an perpetrate the hoax 98% recovery rate

  • Leave a Reply

    Special!
    • Kellyanne Conway: Democratic mayors starting to ‘lose it’ August 12, 2020
      Democratic mayors are "losing it" and attacking President Trump instead of addressing the issues plaguing their cities, counselor to the president Kellyanne Conway told "Fox & Friends" Tuesday. She immediately thanked the Secret Service and lauded Trump for continuing his press conference Monday after being escorted from the White House briefing room, telling reporters "there was a shooting outside […]
    • Earthquake jolts Charlotte area, strongest in NC in 104 years August 11, 2020
      A 5.1 magnitude earthquake felt in Charlotte shortly after 8 a.m. Sunday was centered just over a mile south of Sparta, near the Virginia border, the strongest quake to hit North Carolina in more than a century. In fact, it was the strongest earthquake in the state since 1916, according to the National Weather Service, […]
    • President Trump claims getting election results may take years if all voters have the option to vote by mail August 9, 2020
      President Donald Trump continued his campaign to discourage universal availability of mail-in voting Wednesday, telling "Fox & Friends" that if everyone is given the opportunity to vote by mail this year, it could take years to get the election results. The president was asked specifically about Nevada, where the Democratic-controlled Legislature passed a measure that would have […]
    • Where Fake News Is Born: How Wikipedia Spreads Hoaxes August 8, 2020
      As Big Tech suppresses conservative views in the name of fighting “fake news,” tech titans like Google and Facebook turn to Wikipedia to provide another “fix” to the problem. Despite messaging from Wikipedia’s owners encouraging this trend, over the years, Wikipedia and its sister sites have pushed hoaxes and false information into the media and academia. There […]
    • The Real Reason Democrats are Pushing for Mail-In Ballots August 5, 2020
      Mail-in ballots are the latest talking point for Democrats and their media allies.  They claim this will keep voters safe from the Wuhan virus, even though it is burning itself out quite nicely on its own. The surges in cases we are seeing across the country mean that more and more of the population have been […]
    • Bodycam footage showing George Floyd resisting arrest debunks ‘racism’ narrative August 5, 2020
      A newly leaked video of George Floyd’s arrest has been making its rounds after being posted by the DailyMail. In the video, we see a completely different depiction of the events leading up to his death that included resisting arrest from the start, claiming he couldn’t breath several times before being put on the ground, and […]
    • EAST COAST ON STORM ALERT… August 3, 2020
      Isaias (ees-ah-EE-ahs) is crawling just off Florida's Atlantic coast and will head to the Carolinas, then up the East Coast as far north as New England, bringing heavy rainfall, strong winds and storm surge flooding to some areas. A watch means the respective conditions are possible within the next 48 hours. A warning means those conditions […]
    • Dunkin’, McDonalds, And Starbucks To Close Hundreds Of U.S. Restaurants August 2, 2020
      Dunkin’, McDonalds and Starbucks will close a combined 1,400 locations across the U.S.,  as the companies report major sales plunges amid the coronavirus crisis. Dunkin’ (née Donuts), which reported a 20% second-quarter revenue drop, will close 800 or 8% of its retail locations by the end of 2020, including 450 Speedway outposts as the fast food chain has terminated […]
    • Chernobyl fungus could protect astronauts from radiation on deep-space missions August 1, 2020
      A type of fungus found at the site of the Chernobyl nuclear disaster was sent into space in a research project that aims to keep astronauts safe from radiation on deep space missions. “The greatest hazard for humans on deep-space exploration missions is radiation,” the scientists explain in an abstract of a paper uploaded to the bioRxiv preprint […]
    • Google CEO Dodges Question On Blacklisting Of Conservative Websites July 31, 2020
      Google CEO Sundar Pichai brushed off questions Wednesday before the House Judiciary subcommittee on antitrust related to the tech giant’s apparent blacklisting of conservative groups last week when about a dozen major websites were temporarily de-platformed. “I will have to look into it,” Pichai said in response to a question from Republican Congressman Gregory Steube over the […]