TEXARKANA, TX— COVID cases are back on the rise in Bowie County and the Texarkana region. Hospitalizations due to COVID are also increasing, and available resources to care for COVID patients are critically low.
“It is imperative, now more than ever, that the residents of Bowie County and the Texarkana region seek out a COVID vaccine,” Local Health Authority Dr. Matt Young said. “We are seeing sick patients come through the clinic and emergency rooms at an alarming rate, and most of them are unvaccinated. This new Delta variant is moving quickly through our area and affecting younger populations more acutely. Now is the time to remain vigilant and keep fighting this disease.”
CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System’s acting Chief Medical Officer, Mike Finley, underscores the need for the community to be vaccinated.
“With the number of COVID-19 cases continuing to climb in our community and recent increases in hospitalizations for COVID positive patients, we want to encourage area residents to take advantage of the opportunity to receive COVID vaccine,” said Finley. “These vaccines are a powerful tool in combating the spread of COVID-19.”
Wadley Regional Medical Center has seen the effects of the disease ramping back up in the Texarkana area as well.
“We are committed to providing care to all in need, but the continued increase in cases can put a strain on the healthcare system. We strongly encourage people in our community to be vaccinated to protect themselves and each other. Wadley continues to require masks while in our hospital and limit visitors so to encourage social distancing,” Shelby Brown, Director of Marketing and Planning for Wadley Regional Medical Center said.
According to the Texas DSHS website, only 28.76% of individuals over the age of 12 in Bowie County are fully vaccinated. Compared to the state of Texas, that is significantly worse than the overall 59.02% of Texans who are vaccinated.
The Texarkana-Bowie County Family Health Center will host a vaccination clinic this Thursday, July 22, 2021 from 10:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m. The Clinic is located at 902 W. 12th Street, Texarkana, Texas. The vaccination is free, and no pre-registration is required. Participants will have a choice between Moderna, Pfizer and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccines. Transportation is being provided for this event by the Arktex Council of Governments and can be requested by calling 1-866-575-9014.
CHRISTUS St. Michael Health System will provide free, single-dose COVID-19 vaccinations to anyone age 18 or older via the Spirit of St. Michael Mobile Unit staff.
The Spirit of St. Michael staff can schedule visits to businesses/industry sites and can also provide home visits for those unable to travel.
For additional information, or to schedule a site visit, contact the Spirit of St. Michael at 903-748-8573 for information or any questions.
Local COVID-19 data regarding infection rates can be found at https://txdshs.maps.arcgis.com/apps/dashboards/ed483ecd702b4298ab01e8b9cafc8b83 and vaccination rates can be found at https://tabexternal.dshs.texas.gov/t/THD/views/COVID-19VaccineinTexasDashboard/Summary?%3Aorigin=card_share_link&%3Aembed=y&%3AisGuestRedirectFromVizportal=y . To locate a vaccine site nearby, visit https://www.vaccines.gov/ .
While local officials continue to monitor case counts, and stay updated on CDC guidelines, individuals are encouraged to follow the advice of their primary care physician and stay current on recommendations from the CDC for ways to stay healthy: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.
Locally, Texas DSHS reports a total of 5,324 confirmed positive COVID-19 cases, and 2,581 probable cases with 227 deaths. The Department of State Health Services is reporting 135 active cases currently in Bowie County, which is 87 more positive cases than were actively being monitored at the end of April when the EOC last sent an update.