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 23:
Mauricio Casillas (KVIA): How has this past week gone for you?
Dr. Jose Burgos (UMC’s Director of Internal Medicine): "It hasn't been the busiest. Our cases are dropping slightly, but we are still seeing a lot of patients coming in. Fortunately, not at the numbers we saw a couple of weeks ago."
Casillas: Can hospitals handle the current number of patients?
Burgos: "At this point, we definitely have capacity. Not only with beds, but also with staff and PPE. Fortunately, we also have availability of medications to treat severe cases of Covid-19."
Casillas: What should people at home be doing right now?
Burgos: "We need to stay hopeful. As some of you may be seeing in international news, a lot of groups are closer to seeing a vaccine. We just want to see the results coming out and hopefully have something positive so we can start using this before the end of the year."
Casillas: What is the most eye-opening thing you’ve seen this week?
Burgos: "So many people involved in the care of these patients. It's amazing to see what so many people can accomplish. Even that one person who walks out of the hospital after being there for 30, 35 days, it's incredible. So many people touched that life, and that life in return touched so many of us."
Casillas: What is your prediction for next week?
Burgos: "As we are seeing the numbers with a slight decrease, I hope that we stay that way. The difference is this -- the mask. The reason I'm using this today is not only because I'm in one of the tents that is used to screen patients before they walk into our emergency room, but it's also to show you that you can have a normal conversation. You can spend several hours with this and nothing will happen. Your oxygen levels are not going to drop."
Casillas: What is giving you hope at this time?
Burgos: "Seeing people walk out of the hospital and having the availability of treatments."
Casillas: What is your message to the Borderland?
Burgos: "Stay positive. As a community, we can beat this."
Statistics for July 23:
- 12,501 total cases, 3,564 active cases, 211 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)
- July 9 Q&A: (8,385 total cases, 3,085 active cases, 145 deaths)
- July 16 Q&A: (10,638 total cases, 3,708 active cases, 173 deaths)