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Hospital in McAllen overwhelmed with COVID-positive migrants

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By Jenny Goldsberry

Dr. Marc Siegel uncovered the story of the McAllen Hospital in Texas that is overwhelmed with COVID-19 cases. But the majority of their patients aren’t locals, they are migrants who just crossed the border.

Now, Dr. Ivonne Lopez-Lopez of the hospital says the surge is due to the unvaccinated patients. Nearly all of their patients are unvaccinated. Even fellow vaccinated doctors have contracted the virus.

“They’re coming in because they want a better opportunity,” Lopez-Lopez said. “I try to hear them out, right because they are coming in with an idea, a dream, and they end up sick.”

As a result, The White House recently sent 8.5 million vaccine doses to Mexico, 1.5 million to Honduras and 1.5 million to El Salvador. Meanwhile, border patrol agents are also suffering, some contracting the virus and even dying.

In Siegel’s opinion, the COVID-19 response needs to evolve with the times. “The biggest mistake of the whole pandemic is rigidity,” he tweeted, “not acknowledging that you are shooting at a moving target, not acknowledging the latest research (on masks, on schools, on vaccines) as it emerges, not altering your thinking even when the whole game changes.”

You can follow Jenny Goldsberry on Twitter @jennyjournalism.

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COVID-19

California Tells COVID-Positive Medical Staff to ‘Return to Work Immediately, Without Isolation or Testing’

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The Los Angeles Times came out with a piece Wednesday titled, “With hospitals reeling, California tells COVID-positive medical workers to stay on the job.” With more and more patients arriving to the emergency room every day, forced to wait entire days to be seen, there is no one to answer the phones and no one to take out the trash.

Due to the Omicron-fueled surge, healthcare workers are calling out sick in droves, and has “left the medical infrastructure on edge.” As a result, California, and other state’s officials are examining a “Sweeping policy change that allows asymptomatic healthcare workers who have tested positive for the coronavirus to return to work immediately, without isolation or testing.”

Currently, the policy will remain in place through February 1st to avoid staffing shortages. The California Department of Public Health said because hospitals are reaching capacity, providing essential care is extremely compromised.

“Given those conditions, the department is providing temporary flexibility to help hospitals and emergency services providers respond to an unprecedented surge and staffing shortages” said the agency.

On Tuesday, nurses and representatives with the SEIU 721 union spoke out against the measure outside the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors meeting in downtown to L.A. The California Nurses Association also said it planning a “day of action” for Thursday to condemn the state’s decision.

“It is absolutely infuriating that Democrats turned our nation upside down, harmed our children and may have even allowed the Democrats to steal an election creating these mandates, only to be forced to throw it all out the window on a whim because they did not work” says Sara Carter

“When President Trump was questioning these things, when I would question these things, when any sane person would question these things, the Democrats tried to make everyone look like they wanted to kill their grandmother and that we were conspiracy theorists” adds Carter.

“Is the situation ideal? No,” said Dr. Robert-Kim Farley, an epidemiologist and infectious-diseases expert at the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health. “Is it the lesser of the two evils of having no one to care for patients, versus having staff caring for them that may have COVID? Yes, it’s the lesser of two evils.”

The L.A. Times adds, “Kim-Farley said the policy is a recognition of the significant strain hospitals are experiencing amid an increased number of patients and decreased number of staff. The chances of transmission from an asymptomatic worker are minimal, he said, particularly since he or she would be practicing precautions, including wearing high-grade medical masks.”

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