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COVID-19 cases on the rise in the Permian Basin

Most cases are considered to be the Omicron variant. The good news is that symptoms tend to be mild.

MIDLAND, Texas — Since the start of summer, a lot of places have seen a rise in COVID-19 including right here in the Permian Basin.

"We have seen an increase in the number of hospitalizations," said Val Sparks, Infection Preventionist for Midland Memorial Hospital. 

The good news is that symptoms are mild and only certain groups are being sent to the hospital.

"They are elderly, only 65, all but one of them had been vaccinated not all of them were boosted and they did have underlying issues," Sparks said. "Symptoms though do seem a lot more minor for those healthy individuals and especially those that are previously vaccinated."

Although there's no concrete reason as to why numbers have gone up, it might have to do with the activities of the summer months.

"People are traveling more, the mask mandate is off on the airlines and it's basically off all over," Sparks said.

So, its important to remember those tips and tricks to keep yourself and others from getting COVID-19.

"If you've got a big family wedding coming up and you've got a sore throat and a fever and aren't feeling well I would recommend you not go," Sparks said. "Continue to wash your hands, use the hand sanitizer if the sinks are not available, like I said get the vaccine if you're eligible." 

Also, if you think you may have COVID-19 and the symptoms aren't serious, don't go to a hospital.

"Don't bring the whole family into the emergency room just for COVID-19 testing because that really ties up the beds and the nurses and the staff so we really need to save those for the individuals that truly, truly need medical help," Sparks said.

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