COLLEGE STATION, Texas — COVID-19 cases are on the rise in Aggieland.
The Brazos County Health District reported 304 new cases on Thursday and four new deaths. Conversely, last month's reports from the district show typical daily rates of anywhere between 55 and 150 cases.
Texas A&M clinical assistant professor Dr. Jason McKnight said that while he is hopeful for a future with a decrease in cases, the current rise does concern him and his colleagues.
"I am working in the hospital this week and I am exhausted," McKnight commented. "My team is exhausted. The hospital is completely full. Once again, just like we had in January and February, we have patients admitted to the hospital that are basically in hallways in the emergency room because there is no bed available for them.”
McKnight said that while some of these coronavirus cases could have come about from a heavily populated event, typically it does take about two weeks for an event’s effects to start showing up in case counts. So, the health district reports may not yet be seeing the effects of Labor Day weekend or the Texas A&M football game.
“I think with classes being changed to all in person, I think it was honestly kind of inevitable that we’d see a spike, just because of no social distancing in classes and whatnot," stated Bethany Rogers, a Texas A&M junior.
Some Texas A&M students noted that they haven’t seen much of an effort amongst their fellow classmates to mitigate the spread since school started.
“I actually do have a lot of friends that have autoimmune disorders and issues, and so it is very alarming, especially studying public health, that the school isn’t doing as much as they should to protect those individuals," said Carolina Rodriguez, another junior at Texas A&M.
To fight the continued spread of COVID-19 and its variants, Dr. McKnight stressed the continued importance of vaccination, especially for anyone planning to socialize and attend public gatherings.
“You know, for anyone out there that currently thinks, ‘Oh, I’m not vaccinated, and I’ve gone the last 18 months and I haven’t caught COVID, so I’m going to be just fine’ the Delta variants and other variants going around right now are contagious enough, that I don’t think that’s going to work out in your favor in the long run," McKnight said.