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Lines continued to form Friday afternoon at a pop-up COVID-19 testing site in the 4800 block of Wesley Street in Greenville

Local hospital officials again are issuing regular updates on the number of COVID-19 patients under care in Hunt County following a surge of hundreds of new cases and multiple deaths to start 2022.

Hunt Regional Healthcare CEO Lee Boles said Thursday, “As of today there are a total of 157 patients admitted at Hunt Regional Medical Center. Thirty-four of these patients are COVID positive. Of the 34 COVID positive patients, three are in the ICU and one of those is on a ventilator. We have eight patients holding in the Greenville ER for inpatient beds and no patient holds today at the ERs in Commerce or Quinlan.”

Boles said additional measures are being implemented to address the rising numbers tied to the Omicron varient.

“Our Hunt Regional Medical Center Post Anesthesia Care Unit has been converted back to an inpatient care area, as we did during the previous COVID surge, and we have seven patients being treated in this area,” Boles said. “Our surgery committee is constantly monitoring the situation to determine if surgeries should be halted due to a lack of space for patient recovery. So far it seems the patients admitted with COVID are not as severely ill as with the previous COVID variants. In addition, the patient length of stay is less than we saw last fall as well.”

Boles said Hunt Regional Healthcare is also making changes to the hospital’s antibody infusion center, which assists patients suffering from COVID-19.

“You may have seen on the news that the monoclonal antibody infusions used to treat the previous COVID variants are not effective against the Omicron variant,” Boles said. “We have requested Sotrovimab, which is the only antibody shown to be effective against the Omicron variant but have not yet received any. Due to this lack of the appropriate supply, we are unable to accept any referrals for COVID antibody infusions. COVID testing is in high demand. If you need testing this is available throughout the county at Wal-Mart, Walgreens, CVS, as well as our Lab Solutions main office in Greenville, the VA Clinic and Raffa Clinic, also in Greenville.

Thenumber of COVID-19 cases in Hunt County continues to sharply increase.

The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) indicated there were 885 active COVID-19 cases in Hunt County, compared to 165 on Dec. 17.

Hunt County has now recorded a total of 319 deaths attributed to COVID-19, seven more than had been reported Dec. 17.

The statistics were compiled by the state agency Thursday.

Hospitals in Trauma Service Area E, a 19-county region of North Texas, which includes Hunt County, reported 2,746 patients in hospital beds with COVID-19 as of Thursday, an increase of 437 cases since Tuesday. COVID-19 cases accounted for 31.4% of the 8,740 patients hospitalized due to the virus across Texas.

As of Thursday, 43.53% of Hunt County residents eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine were reported as fully vaccinated. A COVID-19 vaccine event is continuing in Hunt County via a collaboration between Carevide and community partners at 4311 Wesley Street Suite B (inside Carevide Women's Center). All brands of vaccine are available as well as boosters for those who are eligible. Appointments are available and walk-ins are accepted. To schedule an appointment, visit https://bit.ly/2ZB0lBL

Pediatric vaccines for children ages 5-11 are not currently available at the event.

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