Starr County officials plea, as COVID cases climb out of control

Local News

RIO GRANDE CITY, Texas (KVEO) — The weekly number of residents testing positive for COVID-19 in Starr County, has grown to 10 times what it use to be in October, before Halloween.

In the past two week nearly 800 Starr County residents have tested positive for COVID-19, and now health officials are desperate for vaccines.

“It’s gigantic. It’s difficult to understand how it could have gotten so out of control,” said Dr. Antonio Falcon, Starr County Health Authority.

Last week, the hospital informed the county’s Emergency Management that they needed more personnel for the hospital. County Judge Eloy Vera, requested help from the state, and the state approved the county’s request for more nurses.

Despite having some of the tougher restriction in the Rio Grande Valley, hospitalization rates have risen to 60 percent.

“We really have tried hard, and the numbers still have gotten out of control,” said Dr. Falcon.

Officials say what they need to do is mass vaccinate residents, like they have done in neighboring counties.

“We certainly appreciate getting 200-300 vaccines, but we need thousands not hundreds we need thousands of vaccines,” said Starr County Judge Eloy Vera.

Officials said they have a game plan to mass vaccinate more than 2,000 residents on the waiting list.

“Were desperate to get more vaccines. Desperate, willing, and able to vaccinate as many people as possible,” said Dr. Falcon.

Judge Vera said they are optimistic they will be able to mass vaccinate, and expect to make an announcement in the coming days.

Health officials said Emergency Rooms are not turning away patients. It is important for people who are just beginning to feel ill, to get to the ER for treatment. That has proven effective in the early stages of the virus.

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