GALVESTON COUNTY, Texas - Galveston County, along with Brazoria County, have formally requested a change in their Trauma Service Area.
In a letter to the Texas Department of State Health Services from Galveston County Judge Mark Henry and Brazoria County Judge Matt Sebesta, the counties are requesting a move from Trauma Service Area R to Trauma Service Area Q.
Currently, Trauma Service Area R includes counties that stretch from the Texas-Louisiana border to parts of the western Houston Metropolitan Area including Galveston, Brazoria, Jefferson, Orange, Newton, Jasper, Hardin, Chambers, and Liberty County.
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Henry says Galveston County and Brazoria County are geographically disconnected from the area with only a small stretch of land connecting the rest of the region. He also stated that the other counties of the Houston Metropolitan Area, west of Galveston Bay, are included in Trauma Service Area Q.
Henry said the spread of COVID-19 within Trauma Service Area Q impacts the residents and hospitals in Galveston and Brazoria County significantly more than the spread of COVID-19 in Trauma Service Area R. The counties on the eastern side of Galveston Bay have their own healthcare networks that are not directly nor indirectly connected to the healthcare networks in their counties.
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Henry says that hospitalization rates and bed capacity for Galveston and Brazoria County have never followed the trends of the rest of Trauma Service Area R. He added that their hospitals consistently have greater capacity and lower rates than the other counties they share a region with.
As a result, Henry said the data provided by the Texas Department of State Health Services supports the argument that the COVID-19 trends of Trauma Service Area Q are more closely indicative of the situation on the ground in our counties than the trends of Trauma Service Area R.
Both counties said that it is "detrimental to our local residents and businesses to have public policy decisions based on public health trends of a region that does not reflect our local situation."
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