Metro Health medical director paints grim picture amid COVID-19 hospitalization surge in Bexar County

209 people admitted to the hospital over the last 24 hours, mayor says

San Antonio (Illustration by Henry Keller)
San Antonio (Illustration by Henry Keller) (KSAT)

SAN ANTONIO – Bexar County and San Antonio leaders are seeing a surge in hospitalizations and more people getting tested amid an increase of COVID-19 cases in our area and across the state.

San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg said during Tuesday night’s COVID-19 briefing that there were 209 people admitted to the hospital within the last 24 hours, 24 of which were pediatric cases.

See today’s COVID-19 numbers and what to know about the latest rise in San Antonio and surrounding areas here.

Nirenberg said he learned Monday that the state had asked for refrigerated trucks weeks ago to hold bodies of people who have succumed to COVID-19. He said it was indicative of what the state expects, given the recent court battles across the state over mask mandates and vaccine hesitancy.

The mayor continued to push common-sense COVID-19 precautions, like masks, social distancing, vaccines and other measures.

Bexar County Commissioner Justin Rodriguez says the Fusion Center is seeing an average of about 100 patients a day. He said the antibody treatment can hopefully prevent some people from having to go to the hospital.

San Antonio Metropolitan Health District Director Claude Jacob said the city’s facilities have plenty of capacity for testing, and the city is well-equipped to test more people, if needed.

Dr. Junda Woo, medical director of Metro Health, agreed and said the severity of the pandemic will depend on the measures people take now. She said depending on how vaccination rates trend, and if proper precautions are taken, it could mean the difference between months of more cases to come or years if conditions don’t improve.

“It’s still tight,” Woo said. “... Do we want to be in this for another few months? Or do we want to be in the pandemic for another year or more? A lot of it depends on how much we get vaccinated now and take these measures, like wearing a mask. If we get to where another variant goes free the way the Delta variant has with the number of unvaccinated people we have, this is not going to end anytime soon.”

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About the Author:

Ivan Herrera has worked as a journalist in San Antonio for four years. Using his graduate degree in business from UTSA, he developed "Money: It's Personal," a weekly series that airs on GMSA at 9 on Tuesdays. The series breaks down personal finance topics into easy explainers. Before living in SA, Ivan covered border news in the Rio Grande Valley.