Delta Variant fills Hospitals
HARRIS COUNTY – Harris County judge Lina Hidalgo raised the COVID-19 threat level to “red” on Thursday afternoon, as the COVID-19 delta variant has increased hospitalizations and strained the region’s hospital resources over the past month.
It’s the first time the county has hit its highest threat level since June 2020.
The new advisory indicates that severe and uncontrolled outbreaks are present in the community and worsening, and that the public health capacity in the region is strained or exceeded, Hidalgo said.
“It’s straining our staff, it’s straining our hospitals, and it’s imposing heartbreak and anxiety in so many families in Harris County,” Hidalgo said.
The county judge called the latest surge a “perfect storm” of strained staff, a more transmissible virus, and the limited ability for local leaders to implement public health policies after Gov. Greg Abbott issued orders preventing such measures.
Hidalgo urged everyone eligible for a vaccine to get one, or else avoid “all but the most essential interactions.” She also recommended both the vaccinated and unvaccinated wear masks, and told the public to use ERs for life-threatening emergencies only.