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Austin Convention Center
(Travel_with_me/Shutterstock)

The Austin Convention Center, which has been prepared as a field hospital should local facilities need more space, will not open yet.


"We've delayed to some extent the opening of the alternate care site to ensure that the hospitals are getting the staff they need to support their efforts before we staff the ACS," Austin-Travis County Interim Health Authority Dr. Mark Escott told county commissioners on Tuesday.

Hospitalization rates in the Austin area have stabilized recently, with overall hospital occupancy falling slightly. ICU occupancy may be a different story—it was reported at 89% at the end of last week at the same time that social media posts appeared with accounts of stretched resources—but the field hospital is not meant for patients that need a high level of care.

"[Hospital capacity is] not going in an upward direction anymore, but the hospitals are impacted right now," Dr. Escott told commissioners. "Our health care workers, our nurses, our physicians, our allied health professionals in the hospitals are busy, and they're tired."

Because of more severe outbreaks in southern Texas, Austin will likely need to recruit workers from outside of the state. "I think the funds are available," Dr. Escott said. "The challenge is finding the people."

(Austin Public Health)


Mayor Steve Adler told CBS Austin that the convention center facility may still be needed in the future, and he tweeted yesterday to encourage nurses and skilled technicians to sign up to help with pandemic response.


This article has been updated with new information.

Popular

Tito's releases (not so?) ugly sweater line for the holidays, profits to charity

Tito's Handmade Vodka

Show your love for Tito's and for the community this year with a wide selection of not that ugly, uglyish, ugly, uglier, and ugliest holiday sweaters.

There's lots choose from, and plenty of accessories like scarves and socks, plus gear for your dog, too.

All of the items can be purchased online or at the Love, Tito’s Retail Store in Austin, TX. 100% of all net proceeds from online or in-store purchases go to one of the nonprofits we’ve teamed up with.

Click here to see the entire collection in the Tito's store.

Mac and Cheese Fest and Free Art Exhibit
Waterloo Greenway, Good Vibrations Installation


🗓 All weekend

🎨 Creek Show Art Exhibit

Check out this highly anticipated art exhibition with illuminated art along Waller Creek. Tickets are free and the event includes food vendors, dazzling lights, live music, and hands-on activities

All weekend 6 p.m - 10 p.m | 📍Waterloo Park

✨ Mozart's Light Show

This iconic holiday tradition lights up for the first time this holiday season starting this weekend! Reserve your spot for an enchanting light and sound performance, delicious hot cocoa, sweet treats, and some overall fun with your friends or family. The show runs till January 6th.

6 p.m and 9 p.m | 📍Mozart's Coffee Roasters - 3825 Lake Austin Blvd, Austin, TX 78703

🗓 Saturday

🥊 Kickboxing in the Park

This fitness event is free and open to the public. Get your morning started right with a "Fitness in the park" class for kickboxing! The class will be led by certified instructors and is a great way to get a cardio workout in while also honing your self-defense skills.

10 a.m - 11 a.m | 📍 Metz Park

🛍 The Front Market

Support local LBGTQ+ and female artists at this outdoor market with over 150 vendors. Get your holiday shopping out of the way at this event, with vendors for food trucks, handmade goods, raffles, hands on workshops and activities, and more.

11 a.m - 5 p.m | 📍Ani's Day and Night - 7107 E Riverside Drive, Austin, TX 78741

🗓 Sunday

🧀 Mac and Cheese Fest

Did someone say cheese?! If you're like me and always willing to get your hands on a bowl of mac and cheese, then this event is for you. Check out the Mac and Cheese festival happening this weekend to decide which vendor has. the best mac and cheese for yourself, and enjoy the bar with creative cocktails while you're at it. Tickets start at $45.

11 a.m - 3 p.m | 📍Lantana Place - 7415 Southwest Parkway