Kaufman County is not escaping the surge in COVID-19 cases across the region and U.S.
“The hospitals are full, our own hospital is full, and our hospital staffing is down," said Steve Howie, emergency management coordinator for Kaufman County. "The hospitals in every county around us, except for Dallas, is full and has no vacancies.”
Health care and staffing is becoming a problem across the nation, Howie said during his presentation Friday to the Kaufman Lions Club.
"The overflow of patients coming into the emergency room because they test positive with Covid is creating chaos," he said. "Though critical patients are advised to go into their local emergency room, patients that are only experiencing mild cases of Covid are asked to please stay home and treat and watch their symptoms as if they are treating the flu or a bad cold. If changes in symptoms or state of being rapidly occur, then patients are advised to come into the emergency room."
With no vacancies in the hospitals, emergency crews have to search for places to take critical patients. Sometimes EMS responders have to wait with a patient up to two to three hours to find a hospital with availability. This situation then ripples and causes a shortage of EMS responders to be available if there were to be any other accidents to occur within the county.
The shortage in availability in the hospital is not only caused by the overflow of patients coming in, but also caused by the shortage of medical staff to treat the influx of patients. Currently the Kaufman County Emergency Management team is working with Texas Health Resources to get additional staffing from the state to assist in resolving the staffing shortage.
On Aug. 23, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration officially approved the Pfizer COVID vaccine, ending the emergency use authorization that had been approved earlier.
Kaufman County commissioners also passed a resolution last week supporting the promotion of vaccinations against COVID-19.
Vaccines are available at the following locations:
City of Terrell Fire Department
Terrell location: 400 British Flying School Road
Vaccine: Pfizer and Moderna
By appointment each Wednesday from 8 am – 12 pm
Brookshire’s Pharmacy-Schedule Online
Kaufman location: 2235 S. Washington Street. 972-932-3815
Vaccine hours: Monday-Friday, 10 am-6 pm. Saturday: 10 am-5 pm
Terrell location: 1400 W. Moore Ave. 972-563-3390
Forney location: 427 Pinson Rd. 972-564-0244
Vaccine: Moderna and Pfizer
CVS Pharmacy-Schedule Online
Kaufman location: 102 E. Mulberry
Terrell location: 1870 W. Moore Ave.
Forney location: 775 E. Hwy 80
Rockwall location: 1220 Horizon Rd.
Kemp Family Pharmacy
Kemp location: 1224 W. Elm Street. 903-498-8523
Vaccine: Johnson and Johnson/ Moderna
Call the pharmacy for vaccine type available and appointment.
Kaufman County encourages organizations, schools, neighborhood associations, and businesses to host on-site vaccination clinics. Contact the Terrell Fire Department at (972) 551-6651,Texas Health Resources in Kaufman at (972) 932-7200, or the State Vaccination Team at (844) 90-TEXAS to set up a clinic.