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‘Some people will just not respond to the treatment’: Weekly check-in with UMC’s Dr. Jose Burgos

Dr. Jose Burgos
Dr. Jose Burgos is the director of internal medicine for UMC.

EL PASO, Texas (KVIA) -- In an effort to deliver the most comprehensive coronavirus coverage, ABC-7 has started a weekly feature where we ask Dr. Jose Burgos, the director of internal medicine at University Medical Center, the same seven questions each week to track how the pandemic is changing.

Here's the Q&A for Thursday, July 9:

Mauricio Casillas (KVIA): How has this past week gone for you?

Dr. Jose Burgos (UMC’s Director of Internal Medicine): "This is the busiest that we have been since the pandemic started -- since we detected the first case? It doesn't seem to be slowing at this point?"

Casillas: Can hospitals handle the current number of patients?

Burgos: "We can handle the number of patients at this point, again, we are the busiest that we have been since March. No question about it."

Casillas: What should people at home be doing right now?

Burgos: "Please be careful who you read the news from. What type of platform are you using to get your information? There's enough scientific evidence to understand that this is basic. We have been using masks for years to protect ourselves from tuberculosis. We have been using masks for years on patients when we're operating on them, so this is not a game. This is just the way it is. Masks work."

Casillas: What is the most eye-opening thing you’ve seen this week?

Burgos: "People might be doing well one day, they might be crashing the next day. We are keeping them on high doses of steroids, anti-virals, you name it. We're using things that we have never used or that we haven't used in years. We just hope for the best, but some people will just not respond to the treatment."

Casillas: What is your prediction for next week?

Burgos: "I don't see this getting better anytime soon. Not as long as we are not protecting ourselves."

Casillas: What is giving you hope at this time?

Burgos: "There is treatment. Even if we don't understand how this behaves and we cannot predict how our patients will do, most of them are coming out of the hospital, so that is the only thing that is keeping me hopeful at this point."

Casillas: What is your message to the Borderland?

Burgos: "This is not something that the government will come and help us and save us from this. This is our responsibility. It's you educating your family. It's you wearing a mask -- understanding that this is not a political game, at all."

Statistics for July 9:

  • 8,385 total cases, 3,085 active cases, 145 deaths in El Paso County

Here's a list of earlier segments:

  • April 9 Q&A: (225 cases , 1 death)
  • April 16 Q&A: (451 cases, 7 deaths)
  • April 23 Q&A: (675 total cases, 543 active cases, 10 deaths)
  • April 30 Q&A: (924 total cases, 506 active cases, 21 deaths)
  • May 7 Q&A: (1,190 total cases, 541 active cases, 30 deaths)
  • May 14 Q&A: (1,607 total cases, 771 active cases, 43 deaths)
  • May 21 Q&A: (2,046 total cases, 883 active cases, 57 deaths)
  • May 28 Q&A: (2,569 total cases, 1,032 active cases, 72 deaths)
  • June 4 Q&A: (3,069 total cases, 1,059 active cases, 89 deaths)
  • June 11 Q&A: (3,650 total cases, 1,015 active cases, 97 deaths)
  • June 18 Q&A: (4,088 total cases, 946 active cases, 119 deaths)
  • June 25 Q&A: (4,984 total cases, 1394 active cases, 125 deaths)
  • July 2 Q&A: (6,389 total cases, 2,223 active cases, 132 deaths)

El Paso / Health

Mauricio Casillas

El Paso native Mauricio Casillas co-anchors ABC-7’s Good Morning El Paso.



  1. I do agree that this is not the federal govts responsibility. The fact most people are getting out the hospital and even better faster should give him tremendous hope. He needs to address the elderly and immunocompromised and urge them to self quarantine the most. Another glimmer of hope is that the infection rate is going up (predictable) but the death rate is slowing, which makes the lethality lower as well

  2. The doctor said 2 things that will make the liberal dumb butts on this site heads explode. They are using treatments they haven’t used in years (Hydroxychloroquin?) and this is not something the government is going to come and save us from. It’s our responsibility. No mater what our awesome President does, this virus needs to run it’s course. And he’s right about this virus not be political. The response however, is completely political.

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