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Brazos County Health District discusses vaccinations, hospitalization rates and back to school procedures

The age difference in hospitalization rates has decreased 10 years due to unvaccinated younger patients.

BRYAN, Texas — The Brazos County Health District held a press conference Monday with updates on the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Brazos County Health Authority Dr. Seth Sullivan said as of Monday, there are 719 active COVID-19 cases with a seven-day average of 64 new cases per day. As of August 16, 2021, the hospitalization rate stands at 24.86%

Currently, 46.5% of Brazos County is fully vaccinated against the Coronavirus while 55.2% have one dose.

Dr. Sullivan the necessity of a potential third dose of the vaccine for those who are immunocompromised. He said if distributed, the booster dose would be for patients who have cancer, are in need of an organ transplant, have untreated HIV disease and more. 

Dr. Sullivan also addressed the incoming school year, which begins tomorrow for most students in the Brazos Valley. He said though he hopes to see everyone mask up for their first day, Dr.Sullivan reiterated that in order to stop the spread of COVID-19, students 12 and older and their family members must get vaccinated. 

"Masks do well if everyone is wearing masks. This is better than nothing," he said, adding ventilator masks are more effective.

Dr. Kia Parsi, St. Joseph Chief Medical Officer, addressed his current hospitalization rate, saying St. Joesph Hospital has 74 COVID-19 patients.

95% of them are unvaccinated. 

Of the 5% who are vaccinated and hospitalized, Dr. Parsi added that those patients are immunocompromised, adding that those who are effectively vaccinated have close to a zero percent chance of being hospitalized. 

"We can't wait. We have to vaccinate the population." Dr. Parsi said.

Both Dr. Parsi and Jason Jennings, Baylor Scott & White Regional President, said the age average of hospitalization rates has dropped by 10 years from 65 and older to 55 and younger. 

"As a clinician, it is very difficult to see a five-year-old child say goodbye to his 32-year-old father," Dr. Parsi said. "Knowing that if he was vaccinated, he would be alive today."

Brazos County is offering COVID-19 vaccinations at this time to anyone 12-years and older. To find out more information, call 979-361-4440 or visit their website here.

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