The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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Takeaways from April 2 press conference at Brazos County Health District

The Brazos County Health District (BCHD) held another press conference focusing on COVID-19 on Thursday, April 2.
Dr. Seth Sullivan with BCHD started the conference with a recap of all the information they have released regarding the virus. The number of cases is still 68, four of which resulted in deaths, as reported on March 30. Seven of those who tested positive for the virus are currently hospitalized, and 1,222 tests have been given in Brazos County alone. Health officials have quantified the number of cases with a rate based off of 10,000. The attack rate for Brazos County is 3.09, higher than that of the state of Texas which sits at 1.6, according to Sullivan. Below are some of the main points made at the conference.
1. It is still important to maintain social distancing
Sullivan, as well as other officials there such as College Station and Bryan mayors, Karl Mooney and Andrew Nelson, said that the simple act of social distancing, though tedious, is the key to beating this virus. Sullivan said without it, the County could very well be in a much worse state with a higher number of cases.
Sullivan said if residents abide by the shelter-in-place order and continue to stay at home and limit contact with people in public, the virus should become less of a problem sooner.
2. Resources in health care facilities
Dr. Kia Parsi, the chief medical officer at CHI St. Joseph Health in Bryan, said the shelter-in-place and social distancing orders have provided hospitals more time to prepare for the surge of incoming patients they are expecting.
Parsi said St. Joseph’s has converted an entire wing of the hospital to all negative pressure rooms. These rooms should limit spread and exposure of COVID-19 in the hospital. There are also telemedicine visits available to patients to support social distancing while still providing care the best they can. Parsi said these methods have been effective.
Dr. William Rayburn at Baylor Scott & White Medical Center in College Station said their facility is at 50 percent capacity right now, with room for more patients if the need arises.
3. Finding a new normal
Mooney said change will not come by itself. If we want this virus to go away we must find a new normal. This new normal means limited contact with others, staying inside and following suggestions from health care officials and the CDC. This may be inconvenient to many in the Brazos Valley, but the local officials present ensured that it would bring us closer to the goal of a COVID-19 free county.

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