Health district officials handle ‘alarming’ increase in COVID-19 cases, deaths, hospitalizations

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WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL) — As Wichita County sees record numbers of COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths, health officials are breaking down the statistics.

We’re also in flu season so getting those numbers down is crucial in avoiding a ‘Twindemic.’

While symptoms of the flu and COVID-19 may be similar, the numbers health officials are seeing locally are higher than the flu’s typical burden.

Wichita Falls-Wichita County Assistant Health Director Amy Fagan’s done the math. In the past 30 days, Wichita County has seen an average of 65 people hospitalized and reports 64 deaths.

“To me, that’s alarming and regardless of their age or regardless if they were in a facility or a home, those deaths mattered and I really hope that people can take that into account,” Fagan said. “64 deaths in 30 days is not something we’d see with the flu and I really hope people understand that and can take it seriously, because the next 30 days are going to be imperative.”

The 30 days before that, 14 on average in the hospital and just eight deaths.

In the entire state of Texas, there have been seven pediatric flu deaths this season.

“The thing is with flu, you pretty well know that those who are the oldest and the youngest are going to be most affected by flu and we kind of know what that looks like,” Fagan said. “But with COVID, you know less and can predict less.”

The current COVID-19 climate is heating up and won’t slow down until health safety is a priority for all.

“It’s really put a strain on us, physically, mentally, emotionally as well, you know here we are working seven days a week here at the health department,” Candi Robinson, RN said. “The hospital is working hard with all the people that are in the hospital.”

Health officials said the thing about COVID-19 is it’s unpredictable and it doesn’t discriminate. The most common age for those with the virus in Wichita County are those in their 20’s.

“This is an unusual situation, this does not feel like flu, it does not look like flu, it’s not treated like flu,” Fagan said. “People who go from being asymptomatic to having symptoms that are debilitating with COVID happens more and more frequently.”

“Not only will we be dealing with the flu, but COVID as well, it’s very serious, it’s very very contagious,” Robinson said. “With COVID alone it’s apparently putting lots of people into the hospital and causing lots of people to be really sick.”

A growing concern as COVID-19 infections, trips to the hospital and deaths reach a grim record.

Health district officials want to continue reminding you to not hold gatherings, stay home if you’re not feeling well and wear a mask.

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