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 October 29:
Mauricio Casillas (KVIA): How has this past week gone for you?
Dr. Jose Burgos (UMC’s Director of Internal Medicine): "We have never seen anything like this before. Not in this town -- we have never seen anything like this."
Casillas: Can hospitals handle the current number of patients?
Burgos: "We are working every single day to expand our capacity. As of today, I can tell you that we can take care of the influx of patients. We're getting doctors, nurses, respiratory therapists, and nurse practitioners who are coming from all over the country."
Casillas: What should people at home be doing right now?
Burgos: "There is no reason at all, having hospitals in the state that they are in right now -- having to bring people from other cities to work in our hospitals -- to tell you to go out and have dinner. Or, to go out and go to a birthday party. That could probably be the last birthday party that that person can have. There is absolutely nothing else that I can tell you than stay home."
Casillas: What is the most eye-opening thing you’ve seen this week?
Burgos: "Having people who you know in a bed and you being the doctor, seeing their fear. Knowing that these are the only hands -- and the nurses -- the only hands that they can grab. You don't even know if that is the last time that they will grab somebody's hands. It has to be you. It's not their loved ones. It's heartbreaking."
Casillas: What is your prediction for next week?
Burgos: "If you're following the positive cases per day, you can see how there is no way that hospitals are going to get into a better shape for the next 4-6 weeks, maybe."
Casillas: What is giving you hope at this time?
Burgos: "How people are stepping it up. We have a lot of physicians in the community who are calling us to come and help us, to help around the community and hospitals. That is something that is heartwarming. It's good to see."
Casillas: What is your message to the Borderland?
Burgos: "It is completely unnecessary at this point, with the severity of this situation, for you to be out there socializing. No reason."
Statistics for October 29:
- 45,039 total cases, 14,359 active cases, 585 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)
- July 23 Q&A: (12,501 total cases, 3,564 active cases, 211 deaths)
- July 31 Q&A: (14,276 total cases, 3,311 active cases, 266 deaths)
- August 6: (15,596 total cases, 3,747 active cases, 285 deaths)
- August 13 Q&A: (17,378 total cases, 4,166 active cases, 330 deaths)
- August 20 Q&A: (19,057 total cases, 4200 active cases, 382 deaths)
- August 27 Q&A: (19,925 total cases, 3,102 active cases, 410 deaths)
- September 3 Q&A: (20,686 total cases, 2,822 active cases, 429 deaths)
- September 10 Q&A: (21,335 total cases, 2,724 active cases, 452 deaths)
- September 17 Q&A: (22,078 total cases, 2,801 active cases, 479 deaths)
- September 24 Q&A: (23,207 total cases, 3,300 active cases, 508 deaths)
- October 1 Q&A: (24,666 total cases, 3,812 active cases, 524 deaths)
- October 8 Q&A: (26,969 total cases, 4,929 active cases, 541 deaths)
- October 15 Q&A: (30,624 total cases, 6,887 active cases, 554 deaths)
- October 22 Q&A: (36,025 total cases, 9,406 active cases, 567 deaths)