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Western Texas hospitals are already filled up by hundreds of Covid-19 related patients. The overwhelming number of patients worry about the authorities.

ALPINE, Texas — It is one of the fastest-growing coronavirus hot spots in the nation, but there are no long lines of cars piled up for drive-through testing and no rush of appointments to get swabbed at CVS.

That’s because, in the rugged, rural expanse of far West Texas, there is no county health department to conduct daily testing and no CVS store for more than 100 miles. A handful of clinics offer to test those who are able to make an appointment.

Out past the seesawing oil pump jacks of Midland and Odessa, where roadrunners flit across two-lane roads and desert shrubs freckle the long, beige horizon, the Big Bend region of Texas is one of the most remote parts of the mainland United States and one of the least equipped to handle an infectious disease outbreak. There is just one hospital for 12,000 square miles and no heart or lung specialists to treat serious cases of Covid-19.

But in a sign that the virus is surging nearly everywhere, the counties that include Big Bend ranked among the top 20 in the nation last week for the newest cases per capita.

Big Bend, best known for its sprawling national park and the artist town of Marfa, offers an extreme example of the danger playing out across the country, as the virus blazes more widely and furiously than ever before, driving deaths to levels not seen since the spring and thrusting many places into crisis at the same time. From California to Texas to Mississippi, hospitals are filling up and health officials in rural communities increasingly fear that they are on their own.


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In this time of the pandemic, the real heroes are our brave nurses. However, they are aware that if they are not thorough while doing their job, they may face the possibility of being called to come in on a day off to correct charting, or face the fear that if they miss something, they could face disciplinary action.

If you are a Nurse in El Paso who faces any disciplinary issues before the Texas Board of Nursing, please contact El Paso nurse attorney Yong J. An, call or text at 832 428 5679 or Mr. An has represented over 100 nurses before the Texas Board of Nursing since 2006.