As COVID-19 continues to ravage the country, four states in particular are feeling the wrath of the highly infectious and potentially deadly virus in the most extreme ways. According to NBC News, almost 1 in 5 new cases of the coronavirus reported around the world came from just three U.S. states—Florida, Texas and California—while Arizona is also experiencing a major surge. (Countrywide, there have been 3.53 million cases and 138,000 deaths.) In case you still aren’t convinced of the severity of the situation in these four states, here are some of the realities they are dealing with as coronavirus cases are piling up. Read on, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don’t miss these 37 Places You’re Most Likely to Catch Coronavirus.
Texas: Hospitals are at Capacity
CNN reports that in South Texas, hospitals in Laredo are full and the federal government is being forced to convert a hotel into a healthcare facility. Other hospitals are experiencing not only a shortage of beds, but also drugs, ventilators, and even staff.
Texas: Trucks are Being Used as Makeshift Morgues
Two counties in Texas—Cameron and Hidalgo—have nowhere to put their bodies so they are sharing a large refrigerated trailer. Over in San Antonio officials are in the process of requesting refrigerated trucks.
Texas: Nursing Homes are Overwhelmed
There is worry that nursing home facilities aren’t equipped to deal with the infections ravaging their high-risk residents. According to reports, there were nearly 1,000 new infections of nursing home residents in the week ending Friday, July 10—which is likely a low estimate due to a data lag. Since last Friday, the state has reported more than 1,800 new cases among nursing home residents.
Florida: The ICUs Are at Capacity
According to data released by the Agency for Health Care Administration (AHCA), over 50 hospitals in Florida have reached capacity due to the large number of coronavirus patients—and absolutely no beds are available.
Florida: The State is Worse Off Than Most Countries
With more than 301,000 positive cases of coronavirus, only eight other countries have a higher case count, according to Johns Hopkins University data.
Florida: There’s an “Epicenter of the Epicenter”
Broward County (home of Miami) is the undeniable epicenter of the virus. However, despite the surge of cases, people are still partying in pre-pandemic fashion—forcing the numbers to continue their steady rise. “As of today, our county capacity for intensive care patients was 423 beds and we currently have 438 COVID patients,” Miami mayor, Dan Gelber said in a Tuesday statement. “That means our county is ‘over’ capacity.”
California: It’s Setting Records
California might have been one of the first states to shut down, but their reopening strategy seems to have set them back—way back. On Wednesday they set record highs for hospitalizations and ICU admissions.
California: Phasing Back Reopening and Lockdowns is Possible
Due to their surge of cases, California has been rolling back their reopening, closing bars, indoor dining at restaurants, gyms, movie theaters, and other higher risk indoor venues. And, more stay-at-home orders in at-risk areas are very possible. “We can’t take anything off the table — there’s absolutely no certainty of what exactly is going to happen next,” Dr. Barbara Ferrer, Los Angeles County public health director warned.
California: Keeping Kids Out of Classes
Los Angeles and San Diego school districts—two of the largest in the country—have announced that when children start going back to school in the Fall, all instruction will be online only.
Arizona: Morgues are at Capacity
So many people are dying of coronavirus in some parts of Arizona, that they don’t know what to do with all the bodies. Maricopa County (the Phoenix area) is experiencing the largest surge of cases in the state, and the medical examiner’s office recently ordered four portable coolers to serve as extra morgues.
Arizona: Shortage of Healthcare Workers
The Arizona department of Health announced this week that they are deploying out-of-state nursing staff to hospitals with critical staffing needs. “Hospitals may receive these resources for up to six weeks as they enhance their internal surge plans,” they explained on Twitter.
How to Stay Healthy Where You Are
Wear your face mask, wash your hands frequently, avoid crowds, practice social distancing, monitor your health, and to get through this pandemic at your healthiest, don’t miss this special report: I’m a Doctor and Here’s How to Never Catch COVID-19 Outside.