Midland ISD dealing with hundreds of active COVID-19 cases
MIDLAND, Texas (KOSA) - Schools in Midland have only been back for about two weeks, but the number of COVID-19 cases involving students and staff is on the rise.
Midland ISD announced Wednesday that it has 306 active cases with students and 44 with staff. The list of staff members includes several school nurses and campus leaders.
The school district has implemented measures to slow the spread of the virus, including limiting volunteers on campus and encouraging schools to hold events outdoors with masks and social distancing.
Although masks cannot be mandated, MISD superintendent Dr. Angelica Ramsey stressed the importance of students and staff wearing them.
“Masks for us is the best measure right now to help stop the spread in our schools and I just encourage all the parents out there to send your children to school with one and to model mask wearing when you’re in crowded public spaces, in particular indoors,” said Dr. Ramsey.
Dr. Larry Wilson, the Chief Medical Officer of Midland Memorial Hospital says this surge is different than those in the past.
“It’s rising pretty much straight up at this point and time. We looked at a graph last night with our physicians that shows that and it’s very sobering. Very scary. The numbers are not going to go down even if we do everything perfectly today, this is going to continue to trend upward,” Dr. Wilson said.
MMH CEO and President Russell Meyers says the hospital just received 21 nurses and 10 respiratory therapists that are being onboarded with the goal of starting to work by Thursday.
Meyers says the hospital is looking to open 12 more beds with the help of the new staff. He’s also looking to further expand the staff by hiring contract nurses.
“We’re all demanding help from the same pool of traveling nurse and respiratory therapy staff so costs have gone very high, availability is limited, but we are continuing to try and source them ourselves as well as benefiting from the help we get from the state.”
Officials at the hospital say they met with physicians on Tuesday night to discuss strategies for managing patients in the early stages of infection to help keep as many people out of the hospital as possible.
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