There’s some mixed news on the medical front concerning the fight against this most recent COVID-19 uptick. Carlsbad Medical Center reported testing 204 individuals for COVID-19 on Monday. That’s the highest number of COVID-19 tests the hospital has ever administered in one day. Of those, 35 tested positive. The good news is that positivity rate is quite a bit lower than it was a week or two ago and appears to be in steady decline.
The number of COVID-19 related hospitalizations at the hospital remains high. Most recently, that number included 11 COVID-19 inpatients, four of which were in ICU on vents. It’s important to remember that capacity limits are largely based on staffing levels, not bed limitation. However, hospitalizations at all hospitals in our area remain high, and there are a number of reports of patients having initial difficulty finding a hospital to take them. Members of our regional medical community are working together to make sure everyone is taken care of.
Our hospital, and all other New Mexico hospitals, has been very concerned that the upcoming rule that health care employees receive their vaccination could cause even greater staffing concerns, due to members of their workforce being deemed no longer eligible because of the mandate. On that issue, at least locally, we’ve been informed that there has been considerable progress – many members of our medical community have either recently obtained their first vaccine or applied for an exemption. We certainly support members of our health care community who participated in a protest this past week in opposition to a forced vaccine mandate.
Interest in vaccinations also remains high. A vaccine clinic will be held at the civic center from 8-11 a.m. this Friday and there are currently appointments for 175 people. Finally, we have been informed that data modeling predicts that the Delta variant will peak within the next few weeks. Keep praying for our health care workers and everyone else in our community.
As announced, this year’s Energy Summit is planned for Oct. 21 at the civic center. We’re planning to hold a “Spirit of the Oilfield” awards again this year, in which we recognize some of the unsung heroes of our community. Two of our former Spirit of the Oilfield alumni – Anthony Foreman and Clint Cone, have agreed to be on our selection committee, as has Aaron Emmert with Pioneer Bank and Tracy Hughes with the BLM. A nomination form will go up next week on the Carlsbad Community Foundation’s web page at https://carlsbadfoundation.org/summit/. Past selections have been members of our community who emphasize work safety and supporting their community.
Sincerely, Carlsbad Mayor Dale Janway