By Caroline Vandergriff

FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – The COVID-19 surge is pushing North Texas hospitals to the limit.

Available beds for both adults and children are declining rapidly.

The DFW Hospital Council said pediatric ICUs are more than 99% occupied.

Area children’s hospitals are treating a record number of COVID-19 patients on top of dealing with a huge spike in RSV cases.

The respiratory virus isn’t typically seen in the summer, but right now, emergency rooms and intensive care units are flooded with children who have become seriously ill from it.

CBS 11 talked to parents who said they have had to call multiple hospitals in the DFW area and wait hours for a bed to become available for their sick children.

According to the DFW Hospital Council, there are currently 64 COVID-19 pediatric patients hospitalized in the region, which is the highest they’ve seen.

This was a nine patient increase or 16.4 percent from Monday.

Additionally, the children’s hospitals are treating an unusual number of RSV patients for the summer season.

Experts think the more contagious delta variant is likely to blame and they encourage people to wear masks and get vaccinated.

Stephen Love, President of the DFW Hospital Council, said that will help protect younger children who can’t yet get the vaccine, and keep them out of the hospital.

“The reason we want to keep as many intensive care beds available – not only for adults, but pediatrics – we have car wrecks, people have heart attacks, they have strokes,” said Love. “We need that bed capacity for non-COVID type emergencies.

North Texas children’s hospitals are about 95% occupied right now.

Cook Children’s Medical Center said it has surge plans in place for staffing and beds to make sure there is enough space for anyone who needs to be admitted.

 

Caroline Vandergriff