In a five minute video comparing the spread of the new coronavirus in Travis County to the Titanic, the Travis County Medical Society warned that if the county and its residents do not do more to slow the spread of the disease, the area will soon be overrun with cases.
"The [Titanic's] crew's effort to slow and turn the ship were futile. We all know what happened next," said John Abikhaled, the president of TCMS. "If COVID-19 hospitalizations continue to double at the current rate, in less than three weeks, our health care system's capacity to care for patients will be exceeded."
Abikhaled said, "If the surge continues," there will be a shortage of trained health care workers, medicine to treat patients will be depleted, and hospitals will run out of room for new patients.
"Once our hospitals are overwhelmed, the best possible care can no longer be provided to each patient," Abikhaled said. "Terrible decisions will have to be made about who receives care, and who does not. None of us in the medical community want to be forced to make those decisions."
Experts and elected officials for Travis County and Austin have warned in recent days that the city is nearing its Stage 5 COVID-19 response, which holds the most drastic set of recommendations for shutting down businesses and banning large gatherings.
"Texas is on a collision course with a viral iceberg, but we don't have to sink," Abikhaled said.
Want to read more stories like this one? Start every day with a quick look at what's happening in Austin. Sign up for Austonia.com's free daily morning email.
There is nearly nothing Texas loves more than its Saturday game days, and according to Texas Athletic Director Chris Del Conte, Longhorn fans can plan to pack the stands again in 2021—pending herd immunity.
- Longhorns band will not play "Eyes of Texas" at football game ... ›
- Texas Longhorns football coach Tom Herman job on the line after ... ›
- Excitement, tensions build as Austin expects 18k fans at first Texas ... ›
Journalists at the Austin American-Statesman and its six community newspapers won the right Wednesday to negotiate for a union contract.
The National Labor Relations Board in Fort Worth tallied the results of a newsroom election, in which 36 employees voted in favor of union representation and 12 voted against. The NLRB still must formally certify the election.
- New media company to cover soccer all across Texas - austonia ›
- Austin American-Statesman offers employees voluntary buyouts ... ›
- 7 Austin American-Statesman newsroom staffers laid off - austonia ›
- Manny Garcia to replace Statesman editor John Bridges - austonia ›
- Austin American-Statesman staff ask Gannett to recognize union ... ›
In early February, billionaire entrepreneur Elon Musk told fellow Texas transplant Joe Rogan that Austin was the "biggest boomtown that America has seen in half a century."
Days later, thousands across the city had no access to running water or power as Winter Storm Uri devastated the region.