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"Its not enough"; local nurses call on the state for more medical personnel

Virus Outbreak
Posted at 6:31 PM, Aug 17, 2021
and last updated 2021-08-17 22:27:05-04

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Just last week the Texas Department of State Health Services arranged for more than 2,500 out-of-state medical staff to assist our hospitals. This comes as hospitals across the state face a serious nursing shortage.

While local nurses are eager for any additional help, many are saying not enough is being done.

“These nurses that come on board, its great they’re coming, we’re really going to appreciate that, but it’s not enough. I mean… I don’t think its going to make a dent,” says Trish Brummett, director of nurses at TLC Complete Care.

Nueces County Judge Barbara Canales said our area could have an additional 119 hospital beds open if the state met their request for around 550 healthcare workers.

Dr. Mary Peterson, chief operating officer of Driscoll Children’s Hospital, said we will be receiving about 83 new nurses and can expect 93 additional nurses next week. This adds up to one third of what was requested.

Health professionals say we can potentially expect around 15-20 beds to open up as the 83 nurses this week arrive in the area.

“The personnel that they are giving us are medical floor nurses, ICU nurses, and respiratory therapists,” says Dr. Peterson.

She says about 30 percent of hospitalizations in Corpus Christi are COVID-19 patients, which is double the amount of patients at the state’s capital.

Local nurses say they’ve been working overtime nearly every day and their concerns are only growing despite the incoming help.

“They’re worried about their families too, you know, and they don’t want to take anything home to their families and get them sick. We’re all doing the best we can do protect ourselves and our family that we have to go home to every day. We hope to God that we don’t give them anything,” says Brummett.