In an address to the district commissioners, the district’s chief health officer said there was no good news.
“We’re in a full surge,” said Vinny Taneja, Tarrant County’s director of public health. “We’re in a high community spread.”
On Tuesday, Taneja said the spread of COVID-19 in the Tarrant County community was near 22% as hospital admissions continue to rise.
The latest data showed that 819 people were hospitalized for COVID-19 in Tarrant County, which means nearly one in five people in the area’s hospitals is being treated for the virus, Taneja said.
Taneja said his biggest concern is that children are too young to receive the vaccine as school resumes and cases increase.
“The message is the same. We know how to get through this, ”said Taneja.
He urged parents to get vaccinated to protect those who are too young to be vaccinated and for parents of people between the ages of 12 and 17 to have their children vaccinated in vaccination clinics for back-to-school.
On Tuesday, Cook Children’s Medical Center reported 24 pediatric patients battling COVID-19.
The recent surge in coronavirus comes as pediatric practices and hospitals grapple with an RSV outbreak, adding additional strain on bed capacity and staff.
Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley said hospital capacity was still a major concern for him.
“That has always been the top priority,” said Whitley. “We need hospitals that are open and accessible to our people.”
Regarding Texas Governor Greg Abbott’s ordinance banning mask mandates, Whitley said his hands were tied but urged those vaccinated and unvaccinated to wear masks again to protect themselves from the Delta variant.
“I’ve always been a strong advocate of local control and I think that’s what we need now,” said Whitley. “Texas is a big state. You need to let the elected officials do what is best for their constituents at the local level. “
Taneja told commissioners that the health department was working to expand mobile test sites as the demand for tests had increased in recent weeks. Residents can visit the county’s website to find a free COVID-19 syringe.
Whitley said those who are still concerned with taking the syringe should see their doctor.
“Go to your doctor and stop listening to that nonsense on social media and talking to some crazy man up there about something you don’t know about,” said Whitley. “Trust the people to whom you have entrusted your health all your life and get vaccinated.”