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Baylor Scott & White Health enacts first phase of surge plans as ICU bed occupancy in Brazos County exceeds 100%

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Posted at 9:46 PM, Dec 31, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-31 22:56:01-05

Baylor Scott and White Health is asking residents to "embrace a sense of urgency" in following recommended COVID guidelines after the Brazos County Health District reported that ICU beds in the area has exceeded 100% occupancy.

The Brazos County Health District reported that ICU beds in the area were at 104% occupancy Thursday. Total bed occupancy is at 87%.

Baylor Scott and White Health says they have enacted the first phase of their surge plans to accommodate patients who are in need of intensive care.

According to a statement from the hospital, the hospitalization rate – including the number of patients being treated in our intensive care unit (ICU) – is higher today than it has been at any other point in the pandemic.

"If the current surge continues and our ICU occupancy rate continues to increase, our medical center may not be able to meet the demand for non-COVID healthcare needs. We can avoid this if we change course now," a statement from Baylor Scott and White said.

The hospital asks the public to embrace a sense of urgency in following the recommended guidelines to slow the spread of COVID-19.

As of Thursday, there were 1,128 active cases of COVID-19 in Brazos County with 10,763 recoveries.

The full statement can be seen below:

For months, our health system has prepared to address the anticipated needs of this pandemic and has surge plans in place to successfully manage capacity to continue treating both COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 patients.
Our hospitalization rate – including the number of patients being treated in our intensive care unit (ICU) – is higher today than it has been at any other point in the pandemic. We have enacted the first phase of our surge plans to accommodate patients who are in need of intensive care.
If the current surge continues and our ICU occupancy rate continues to increase, our medical center may not be able to meet the demand for non-COVID healthcare needs. We can avoid this if we change course now.
To continue ensuring that our hospitals are ready for those who need care most during this time, we ask that the public embrace a sense of urgency in following the recommended guidelines of physical distancing, masking and practicing good hand hygiene as we approach the New Year. We know these safety measures can be difficult, but they are proven measures to stop the spread of the virus.
The safety and well-being of our community starts with each member and the decisions we each make. Each member of the community has a role to play in preventing hospitalizations and intensive care unit admissions while protecting ourselves, our loved ones and our communities.
Baylor Scott & White will continue to do what it takes to meet the healthcare needs of our community.