Texas emergency room physician Dr. Natasha Kathuria painted a bleak picture of the battle against coronavirus in Houston's hospitals on Wednesday, warning that "things are definitely getting dire down here."
"The red alarms are going off," Kathuria, who has been working in hospitals across the state, told "Bill Hemmer Reports". "Our ICUs are filling, and that inevitably trickles down to the rest of the hospital and the ER's. We still have a revolving door of emergency room patients coming in ... and the toll it is taking on our health care system is unfathomable.
It is very difficult," she explained. "You know, we are constantly stressed and scared."
On Wedensday, Texas officials reported 110 additional coronavirus deaths, the most new deaths reported in a single day since the pandemic began. In all, the Lone Star State has more than 282,000 confirmed COVID-19 cases, more than 10,000 hospitalizations and 3,432 deaths.
Kathuria told host Bill Hemmer it would only be a matter of time before hospitals see shortages of personal protective equipment (PPE) and critical medications such as remdesivir as well as personnel.
"We’ve got methods to manage this," she said of the virus, "but we can't have this many patients coming in at a time to any one hospital with this disease and expect to be able to continue to have those resources, because we don't.
"I think the problem is we are working really hard, like they did in New York, to fill another bathtub with water and make more bathtub space when we've got a faucet flowing with patients, and we need to turn the faucet off," Kathuria added.
When Hemmer asked Dr. Kathuria whether she thinks Texas will require the help of the USNS Comfort, a Navy hospital ship brought to New York City earlier this year to assist in the response to the coronavirus pandemic, Kathuria said "we are getting there."
"We've already had some help from the military sending some respiratory therapists and nurse," she said. "We are not quite at the point of pulling the trigger for doctor shortages, but we are getting there."
Kathuria urged viewers to wear masks and help "prevent the spread of this virus to our parents and our grandparents who can die from COVID-19."
Addressing question of whether children can transmit the virus, Kathuria asserted flatly that "children can get this virus. They can transmit this virus, they can fall sick from this virus. That is a fact.
"We know that," she added, urging the public once again to "take this seriously and wear a mask."