HOUSTON - Not only are most of the homes in Houston affected, but many area hospitals are also now overwhelmed because of the power and water outages.
The weather and extended power and water failures are causing a crisis for several hospitals and patients, particularly those who need outpatient healthcare.
At Houston Methodist The Woodlands fortunately water and power are still working properly. "We’re doing better than some other local hospitals in the area. Right now our hospital volumes are incredibly high especially in our Emergency Department because several other hospitals are on internal disaster mode," explains Emergency Department Dr. Jason Knight with Houston Methodist The Woodlands.
"We are working with the major dialysis providers in the community to get water pressure back online," says Houston Health Department Chief Medical Officer Dr. David Persse.
In fact, the dialysis clinic where Ronald Waynes was supposed to get treatment at 5:00 a.m. couldn’t care for him because their pipes froze and burst. "I started getting tightness in my chest because I wasn’t able to go for my regular appointment for dialysis so I came to the hospital," Waynes explains.
"We’ve actually had quite a few employees volunteer their trucks and four-wheel-drive vehicles to go pick up employees and nurses and housekeepers and a variety of people to keep the hospital running," says Dr. Knight who has been at work continuously since Sunday.
"The other big group of patients that we’ve seen interestingly enough is, we got 15 carbon monoxide poisonings last night alone. People just need to be aware that if they’re starting to get a headache all of a sudden or they start getting dizzy or really nauseated those can be signs of carbon monoxide poisoning."
MCHD the local fire department and EMS service which is absolutely excellent, it's one of the best in the country.
Their call volume has gone up tremendously. My heart goes out to everyone in the community that’s suffering right now. Whether you don’t have any power or you don’t have any water. Please do your best to care for your neighbor and look out for each other. The hospitals are open. Please don’t delay getting care for strokes or heart attacks or chest pain or sepsis," says Dr. Knight.
"They are doing a fantastic job considering the circumstances. Without them I might not be here," says Mr. Waynes.