Guadalupe Regional Medical Center COVID-19 Update: August 12, 2021

Guadalupe Regional Medical Center as well as the San Antonio region have been experiencing a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases for approximately four weeks. GRMC is currently caring for 31 COVID patients in addition to our non-COVID census. 

GRMC Statistics: The 7-day moving average for COVID hospitalizations is 30 per day which represents a 26% increase from the prior week. The 7-day moving average for new COVID admissions is 4 per day. Overall, 26% of all GRMC emergency department visits at this time are for flu or COVID-like illness. 

96% of patients currently hospitalized at GRMC for COVID-19 are unvaccinated or not fully vaccinated. Following CDC guidelines, GRMC considers people who are two weeks out from completion of second doses of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines or one dose of the J&J vaccine to be “fully vaccinated”. 

GRMC encourages the public to continue to practice prevention measures. Get vaccinated if your family doctor says you are an appropriate candidate. 

GRMC’s Surge Response to Receive State and County Support: Tuesday the Texas Senate Committee on Health and Human Services held a five-hour hearing including testimony from state health stakeholders on the status of the COVID-19 disaster and Texas hospital resources. Following the hearing, the State of Texas, through the Department of State Health Services (DSHS), announced that the state would resume filling requests for medical surge staff that cannot be met locally. DSHS announced it is working with staffing agencies to recruit 2,500 medical personnel to assist facilities with the current increase in COVID-19 patients. 

GRMC has submitted a State of Texas Assistance Request requesting additional health care providers and has recently brought on approximately 8 health care providers (a mix of nurses and respiratory therapists) through private agency contracts. We continue to care for the surge of COVID-19 patients and are prepared to set up temporary units in non-traditional care areas to accommodate a higher volume of critical care patients if we receive enough staffing assistance. 

On Tuesday the Guadalupe County Commissioner’s Court held an emergency meeting and approved $100,000 of American Recovery Plan Act funds to be used in the local fight against COVID-19 to pay off-duty paramedics to assist with administering monoclonal antibody infusions at GRMC. Staffing the infusion clinic with paramedics will allow GRMC to allocate its nursing resources to other needed assignments and still maintain the monoclonal infusion service line. 

Some patients who test positive for COVID-19 with mild to moderate disease and risk factors for progression to severe disease are candidates for monoclonal antibody infusions. GRMC has been working with our local medical community to provide this outpatient service to our high risk populations. Infusions are for treatment of active COVID-19 disease and should not be confused with the protective effect of vaccination. 

COVID-19 Testing and Vaccine Information: If you are looking for local COVID-19 testing or vaccine locations please contact your local family physician and/or pharmacy or try the following websites: 

https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/community-based-testing-sites/index.html#tx 

https://tdem.texas.gov/covid-19/