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2 ICU beds available at Austin-area hospitals

Austin-Travis County Health Authority Dr. Desmar Walkes said Austin-area ICU capacity dropped to the lowest point since the start of the pandemic on Monday night.

AUSTIN, Texas β€” Editor's note: This story originally stated that there were two ICU beds available for COVID-19 patients specifically, rather than two ICU beds available in general.

There are only two ICU beds available in Austin-area hospitals as of Monday night. Trauma Service Area (TSA) O, which covers Austin, serves 2.3 million people across 11 counties.

Austin-Travis County Health Authority Dr. Desmar Walkes said ICU capacity dropped to its lowest point since the start of the pandemic late Monday night. 

RELATED: Watch live: COVID-19 update from Austin and Travis County leaders

Walkes said there were 551 COVID-19 patients in Austin-area hospitals on Monday, Aug. 9. Of those, 91 were in the ICU and 116 were on a ventilator.

In a joint meeting with the Austin City Council and Travis County Commissioners Court, Walkes noted that ICU capacity in other Texas metropolitan areas is also low.

β€œAt this point, transfer between areas is difficult if not impossible,” Walkes said.  

On Monday, there were six available ICU beds for the third straight day, according to data from the Texas Department of State Health Services. COVID-19 patients made up 43.7% of ICU capacity in TSA O.

Walkes said the City of Austin is a day behind reporting ICU bed availability. 

RELATED: Texas brings in out-of-state medical personnel to assist with COVID-19 surge

Across Texas, 394 ICU beds were available, also the lowest number recorded since the start of the pandemic. Those beds make up 6.8% of the 5,788 staffed beds in Texas. 

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Watch live: COVID-19 update from Austin and Travis County leaders