EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — El Paso COVID-19 hospitalizations are at numbers not seen since Spring 2020, with 48 people hospitalized on Saturday, according to the City of El Paso’s data.
The Hospitals of Providence told KTSM 9 News that at one point during the height of the pandemic, across all their locations, there were 427 COVID-19 patients hospitalized. However, on Saturday officials said seven patients were hospitalized with the virus.
“It’s incredible to be there at this point and time — as a matter of fact, three out of four of our hospitals at some point have had zero COVID patients — so once we all get to zero, there will be a big celebration,” said Nicholas Tejeda, Group Chief Executive Officer for The Hospitals of Providence.
Tejeda said that the hospital has made adjustments, even eliminating some COVID-19 units since they are no longer needed.
“One percent of all of our patients are currently COVID patients, actually less than 1 percent,” he said.
Other changes include its visitor policies, which now allow two visitors per patient, however, that does not apply to COVID-19 patients.
“For non-COVID patients, family members can go into the rooms just like always. For COVID patients, they cannot do that yet,” said Tejeda. “If the situation requires it, we can make an exception so that family members can look and communicate with a family member through a glass window and we make those exceptions all the time.”
COVID-19 testing across El Paso is also on the decline. This week El Paso saw a total of 115 new COVID-19 cases. For comparison at the beginning of November 2020, El Paso saw more than 10,000 new COVID-19 cases in one week.
“As we’ve seen, those testing numbers have really declined over the last several weeks and they continue to decline,” said El Paso Fire Chief Mario D’Agostino.
D’Agostino said in a conference on Thursday that the El Paso Department of Health will continue to offer testing in El Paso for now.
“We remind everyone if you’ve been traveling or you feel like you might have been exposed, please get tested, but we will continue as we are,” D’Agostino said.