‘More difficult to get them out of oxygen’ | San Antonio doctor says more young unvaccinated COVID patients are landing in hospital

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“These are the younger patients and the patients who don’t have risk factors that I would think of,” said Dr Jocelyn Juarez.

SAN ANTONIO – A doctor at the Baptist Health System has said the number of incoming patients is increasing. Dr Jocelyn Juarez said they were younger and unvaccinated. She said they were staying in the hospital longer because they were sick and needed high levels of oxygen.

“These younger patients need a lot more oxygen,” she said. “It’s more difficult to remove them from the oxygen.”

Dr Juarez works at the North Central Baptist Hospital. She treats more young people in their twenties, thirties and forties.

“These are the younger patients and the patients who don’t have risk factors that I would think of,” the doctor said.

Dr Juarez said they are treating not only more young people, but more pregnant women.

“I think the Delta variant is one of those variants that gets stronger, which makes it easier for people to catch this virus,” she said.

Dr Juarez said patients are staying longer because of their oxygen levels. She said the common factor to almost all of her patients is that they haven’t received their COVID vaccine.

“My patients that I see who are not vaccinated will have severe symptoms where someone in the household who received the vaccine could get it, but these are mild symptoms,” she said.

With the increase in the number and severity of the delta variant, Dr. Juarez encourages young people to get vaccinated.

“I really think this is the only way to try to stop the pandemic,” she said. I still have hope. I want to hope that things will change. Hopefully people will think about getting the vaccine and things will go in a different direction, unfortunately the way I’m looking at it right now doesn’t look good. “

University Health says it will reinstate visitor restrictions starting Wednesday, a sign that the coronavirus continues to be a major threat in San Antonio and beyond.

Citing hospitalizations “which are climbing at an alarming rate,” UH officials said in a press release that visits will be limited to those “deemed necessary for the care of the patient,” including parents of infants in the NICU; people providing support to patients with disabilities; support for seriously ill patients; and support for women who give birth.

Meanwhile, other local hospital systems maintain policies limiting the number of visitors to their facilities. CHRISTUS Santa Rosa provides one essential support person for “most patients” and two older caregivers for those at the San Antonio Children’s Hospital.

Baptist guidelines allow two visitors wearing masks over 15 years old. And, as of last week, Methodist has also reverted to its COVID-19 policy of one visitor per patient.

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