As area hospitals continue to be bombarded with COVID-19 patients, plans have been enacted to ease the strain by turning the fomer CHRISTUS Spohn Hospital Memorial into an alternate care site -- treatment center dedicated to specializing in caring for patients with severe cases of the novel coronavirus.
Officials have also proposed requesting a naval hospital ship such as the U.S.S. Comfort to the area to accommodate the growing number of people being admitted to hospitals, but according to an expert in our local coronavirus situation, space isn't the problem.
“You really need to have the people to provide the care for the community to sustain the needs for Nueces County,” said Nueces County - Corpus Christi Public Health District Director Annette Rodriguez.
Dist. 27 U.S. Rep. Michael Cloud said the usefulness of a facility such as the Comfort must be weighed against the need.
“What we're really in need of is just people," he said. "We need medical professionals, and already we've gotten about 200 to our district."
The Coastal Bend already has seen a number of health care professionals sent by the state, and even by the federal government, to help already strained local resources.
“The only way we can help them is if we have more people to help them out, so we need additional help right now,” she said.
Cloud said he also has reached out to U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar for additional manpower.
“Standing up an alternative care facility might be important but still we’re gonna come back to the staffing issues,” Cloud said.