Texas Medical Center prepares for coronavirus spread

"If you're going to get COVID-19, you're really in the best place in the world relative to our experts, the number of institutions here and the number of facilities to care for you," said Medical Center President and CEO Bill McKeon.

With its 60 institutions, the Medical Center is like its own city and there's nothing quite like it in the world.

Mckeon says they've been on top of the world outbreak of COVID-19 since the beginning.

"We've been planning for this. We've been watching it from its early days in Wuhan and as it's traveled around the world we anticipated this," he said.

So far, all the Houston area cases are travel related.

Some believe it's only a matter of time before it's spread by the community. The Medical Center says it's prepared for that.

"Mounting up our testing capabilities is the first strategy," said McKeon.

As more data comes in, medical experts are finding COVID-19 is not as deadly as first thought and it's not as dangerous for younger populations.


"In our pediatric populations and really across the world, they have really done well with the flu-like symptoms," said Kelli Nations, division chief nurse executive for HCA Houston Health. "The disease is presenting in our younger populations just like they've had a cold."

The best rule of thumb is to make personal hygiene, like hand washing, a top priority and don't panic.

"Flu season kills far more people around the world than any of these coronaviruses have ever," McKeon said.