SAN ANTONIO – The number of COVID-19 cases continues to rise this week, with some concern amid the upcoming holidays and unanswered questions about the omicron variant.
Dr. Ruth Berggren, an infectious disease specialist with UT Health San Antonio, joined the KSAT Q&A on Thursday to discuss new developments about the variant and to answer questions concerning the virus.
Metro Health reported four new COVID-19 deaths in Bexar County on Wednesday, totaling 4,975 since the pandemic began. The department said there were 376 new COVID-19 cases, with a 7-day rolling average of 319.
“If you don’t feel good, if you feel achy, if you have a scratchy sore throat, some congestion, you feel like the flu might be coming on, assume this could be COVID. Go get a rapid test. Put a mask on,” Berggren told anchors Myra Arthur and Stephania Jimenez during the Q&A on Thursday’s 6 O’Clock News.
There are 200 patients in area hospitals, with 77 in the ICU and 44 on ventilators. There are 13% of staffed beds available and 69% of ventilators available in our area hospitals.
The county’s risk level is “mild.”
Metro Health reports 1,622,994 people have received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 1,342,419 are fully vaccinated.
On Friday, Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff urged the public to get vaccinated and be mindful of coronavirus spread during the holidays.
See more of today’s COVID-19 statistics and city resources for the public here.
When it comes to the new omicron variant or any of those that came previously, Berggren said, “The differences are subtle, and people shouldn’t spend a lot of time trying to discern ‘Which one do I have?’”
Some people may confuse allergies symptoms with those of COVID-19. Berggren said it can sometimes be tough to distinguish between the two initially.
“If you know your body and know what you feel like when you’re having allergies, and that’s all you’ve got, then you probably don’t need to go get a test,” she said. “But, if in addition to your usual allergies you are feeling body aches, if you have a fever, if you have an unusual headache, anything different... go get a test.”