BROWNFIELD, Texas (KCBD) - The CEO of the Brownfield Regional Medical Center, Jerry Jasper, says his staff is working hard to deal with a high number of COVID patients, as Lubbock and surrounding hospitals fill up.
Jasper says besides labor and delivery beds, there are normally 18 ready-to-go beds for patients. Over the past couple of weeks, an influx of patients led to 15 of the beds taken over by COVID patients on Wednesday, decreasing to 12 patients today.
On Wednesday, 83 percent of their hospital space was taken up by patients. On Thursday, that percentage went down to just below 70 percent.
But this huge influx of patients over the past couple of weeks, solely from Terry County, has staff at the hospital on their toes, working to keep up with the patients. Jasper says many of them have co-morbidities like pneumonia. He says none of them are on ventilators right now, but they have five ventilators ready for use. Jasper says if a patient needed a ventilator, they would probably be transferred out for long-term care somewhere else.
“We had great staff. They’re not used to taking care of so many patients at once, especially not COVID where every patient you have to don on and don off with PPE equipment.”
Jasper says they’ve had a high number of COVID patients because there have been fewer transfers Lubbock hospitals at capacity.
In Brownfield and nearby Meadow, gatherings have been limited to 10 people or less beacuse of the high hospitalizations. Trick-or-treating has been discouraged and previously-approved Halloween events have been rejected with a new mayoral order.
“Trying to slow down the spread of COVID in the community is my primary concern. But secondary, is if we’re full, Lubbock is full, Midland is full, then patients are having to be flown to Oklahoma City, Kansas and Colorado. With everybody having no-visitor rules, that means a person can be flown to Colorado and be inside of a bed without family.”