The US city of Houston could be hit hardest in the entire country if the current trajectory in the Covid-19 cases continues as before, a health expert has warned.
Dr. Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine, said new infection rates are also accelerating in Dallas, Austin and San Antonio, and that the number of cases could be competitive with those in Brazil.
“Large subway areas seem to be growing rapidly, and some models are on the verge of apocalyptic,” Hotez told Anderson Cooper for CNN.
Hotez, who is also a professor of pediatrics, molecular virology and microbiology at Baylor School of Medicine, is working on a potential Covid-19 vaccine.
He said the models show Houston could increase the number of daily cases fourfold by July 4th.
“It’s really worrying, and as those numbers increase, we notice a relatively increased number of hospitalizations and ICU receipts. You worry, you’ll get to the point where ICUs are flooding, and that’s when mortality is rising,” he said.
Houston currently has the capacity of a hospital bed, but Hotez said he is worried about the future. “We have more space, but who wants there?”
Something is needed to stop the transfer of the community, he said.
Texas announced 5,551 new Covid-19 cases on Thursday – the state’s highest one-day rise. Florida and California also reported their largest one-day increase in cases.
Texas Gov. Greg Abbott warned residents Tuesday that the spread of the new coronavirus is so thunderous that it is currently the safest place for citizens. He did not issue an official order to stay at home.
Reopening could contribute to: Hotez said the state was aggressive because of social distancing at the start of the pandemic, which reduced the number of cases, but the state reopened in late April, and immediately after Remembrance Day the number of cases began to rise. Hotez said the state has not established a “sufficient level” of public health infrastructure.