Even as Gov. Greg Abbott believes that the new wave of coronavirus is coming to an end in Texas, the situation couldn’t be further from the truth. Hospitals are telling another story.
According to statistics from the Texas Department of State Health Services, the number of Texas children hospitalized with COVID-19 reached an all-time high over the weekend, with 345 on Saturday and 307 on Sunday, the highest two-day stretch recorded throughout the epidemic. Sadly, the numbers from Texas match a national trend of rising pediatric COVID hospitalization rates.
The situation is hard for parents and kids as they go back to school. Children under 12 are ineligible for any of the available COVID-19 vaccines, so they can’t reduce the spread of the virus or the risk of contracting it. There is one recommendation that the CDC has been making, but Mr. Abbott refuses to comply.
Masks have been found in many studies to help decrease COVID transmission inside. In Texas, where infections are on the rise, the CDC report also recommended mandatory masking in schools. Since the start of the 2021-22 school year, the state health department has reported 51,904 COVID cases among Texas kids, according to the state health department.
However, Mr. Abbott has refused to instate a mask mandate in Texas and has challenged school districts that have decided to impose one. There are even some Houston-area districts that have temporarily paused in-person learning due to student infections and absences, as well as staffing shortages.