For those who wonder about or question Gov. Greg Abbott’s move today to shut down bars in the state and required restaurants to backtrack from 75 percent capacity to 50 percent, here is why: hospital capacity vs. occupancy.
According to a just-issued press release from the city of Dallas, the 25 hospitals in the city of Dallas on Thursday reported 6,083 total beds, with 4,425 occupied. That is 71 percent occupied.
Of the 942 total ICU beds, 683 — or 72.5 percent — are occupied. And of the ventilators available, 339 — 0r 35.3 percent — are in use.
And if you look at the graph above, you will see that occupied hospital bed and occupied ICU bed percentages are steadily trending upwards. Percentages around the state are similar. Another number to consider: the Texas positivity rate. That is the ratio of COVID-19 tests conducted in the state to the number of positive results. That is also trending upward and has passed the 10 percent point that Abbot said way back in May would be a “warning flag.”
As hospitals reach their capacity and beyond, healthcare professionals will be overworked, and more and more of them will become ill themselves. In addition, with fewer available hospital beds and other resources, doctors and nurses are going to have to start making life-and-death decisions. For example, you have one ICU bed and one ventilator available, but you have two patients who need to be in ICU and on that ventilator — who gets the bed and the ventilator?
If this trend continues — if we don’t know pull our collective heads out of our collective asses and start doing our part as individuals (WEAR A MASK! WASH YOUR HANDS!) and actually flatten the curve, our healthcare system will collapse.
And then we are all screwed.
— Tammye Nash