FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – The days and nights at Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital are intense, especially in the two ICUs dedicated to treating COVID-19 patients.
For Charlsea Prichard, nursing director of critical care, there’s nowhere else she’d rather be.READ MORE: Mother's Day Rush Highlights Staffing Shortages At North Texas Restaurants
“When I’m actually at home I want to be here taking care of our patients,” Prichard said during a video conference.
Taking care of those patients now also means stepping into a new role, since loved ones aren’t allowed to physically visit. “It is harder for the nurses, just because we aren’t only just the nurses, we also have to be the family… which we don’t mind. We hold their hand, we talk to them, we make sure they know they are loved.”
Texas Health told CBS 11 News they can’t get into specifics about how many patients at have COVID-19, but they do report the numbers to county health officials.READ MORE: Body Of Elderly Man Recovered From Joe Pool Lake
Of the hospitals reporting right now, 119 hospital beds in Tarrant County have COVID patients. That’s about five-percent of all patients.
Prichard said that while they haven’t seen a big wave at their facility yet, they expect it. She also said not to be fooled by emptier-than-usual parking lots. “We don’t have as many lower acute patients because those elective surgeries and things that can be put off have been put off.”
Some good news, she said the steps we are all taking to stay healthy seem to be helping.MORE NEWS: Woman Killed By Ex-Boyfriend, Who Was Later Found Dead By Suicide, Dallas Police Say
“We thought that surge was already going to be here,” explained Prichard. “I think we are flattening the curve and that’s really exciting for us.”