Some Of New Cases Reported May 26 Are In Homes Where There have Already Been Cases
Hopkins County Judge Robert Newsom reported 3 new confirmed cases of COVID-19, putting the total for Hopkins County at 20 cases of COVID-19 since midMarch in Hopkins County. Of the 20 patients, 6 individuals have recovered, and the rest are still being treated for coronavirus.
“To my knowledge, they are at home. Some are in homes where there have already been cases. They are at home being treated in isolation,” Newsom said.
Hopkins County Emergency Management Coordinator Andy Endsley again, when asked, explained that no additional information such as patient demographics are given out, per Texas Department of State Health Services. Other counties may be given information to disseminate, but do so through their health department doctors and nurses.
“Our rep at DSHS has advised us to keep it at what we are giving you,” Ensley said. “We are going with DSHS. We are too small a community. People would figure it out, if we gave it out,” Endsley said.
The emergency management officials are given an address, which is passed to the 911 call centers, Endsley explained. However, that information remains confidential even to emergency officials, unless emergency responders are dispatched to call at that location, in the dispatch system.
“It’s hidden from dispatchers even, unless they have call there. Then, it will be revealed in notes at that location. At that time, we would take appropriate measures,” Endsley said, including notifying the fire department or other emergency responder so the individual can take adequate action prior to approaching the residence. “Dispatchers cannot even see that information until then.”
Newsom reports a nurse has already been attending some of the patients and will be attending to others shortly. The nurse confirms the individuals are being treated at home, the judge reported.
Officials have yet to receive any information regarding results from either the mobile test collection at the Civic Center on May 15 or testing conducted last week at local nursing homes.
“Numbers for nursing homes, like mobile testing, we don’t really know. Hopefully, Brent can give us more information in the next couple of days. I do know testing was successfully completed at nursing homes 3 days ahead of the deadline of when they were due,” Endsley said.
Newsom said the testing information comes from Hopkins County Hospital District COO/EMS Director Brent Smith. As of his last testing report on May 22, 509 tests had been conducted for Hopkins County residents. They hope to receive numbers in the next couple of days regarding testing.
Endsley noted that Smith is part of a regional task force, which has been working with the National Guard to administer tests across Region 4/5. This is on top of his regular duties as director over EMS for Hopkins, Franklin, Delta and Rains counties.
“He is a busy guy. He has to take time to get the numbers out. It takes a little time, having time to do it. It’s a lot,” Endsley said.
Emergency officials remind community members to continue practicing social distance when possible and to follow other recommended health safety guidelines established by the CDC and Texas Department of State Health Services.