Fort Bend County considers alternate sites to treat COVID-19 patients as hospitals fill up

FORT BEND COUNTY, Texas (KTRK) -- The surge in coronavirus cases in Fort Bend County is filling up hospitals and causing health officials to look into possibly setting up new places to treat patients, should it get to that point.

"In case something happens, the hospitals run out of beds, we have to care for our citizens, our patients, so we are in the process of setting up alternate sites so once we need it, we will announce it," said Fort Bend County Judge KP George.

As of Tuesday afternoon, the county's total case count stands at 5,995 confirmed cases.

Despite the surge, George hopes the county won't have to use the alternate sites.

"We will collectively be deciding," he explained. "We're already looking at sites and talking about contracts and things of that nature, but if we run into that situation then we will set it up. It's going to be focused toward COVID-19."

Plans are still in the works and the county hasn't announced the location of any potential sites, but George said they want to be prepared.

This comes as 60% of all COVID-19 cases have been reported in just the past five weeks, and the ICUs are seeing a big increase.

Last week, close to 57% of ICU beds in Fort Bend were being used by patients with the virus.

A week later, it was up to nearly 70%. That's just COVID-19 patients. There are other patients in the ICU as well.

"These numbers are concerning, and if you really look at our total ICU bed capacity, it's very close to 80%, and if we get our cases increasing at 13% a week, we are in serious trouble," said George.

George is urging people to ask yourself before leaving your home if you really need to get out.

He's also asking people to wear a mask, gloves and to practice social distancing.

For more information on Fort Bend County coronavirus cases, visit the Fort Bend County Health and Human Services website.

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