KANSAS CITY, MO (KCTV) -- A glitch in a new system Missouri is using to track coronavirus cases cranked out some pretty alarming numbers over the weekend. On Saturday, the site claimed Missouri had more than 5,000 new cases in one 24-hour period. While the real numbers aren’t nearly that bad. A local respiratory therapist says now is not the time to let your guard down.
Jennifer Smith says if you could actually see what’s happening inside any hospital in Kansas City right now, you would never leave the house without your mask. She recently took to Facebook to at beg her family and friends to stay vigilant.
It’s a powerful post, but what Jennifer Smith sees as a respiratory therapist during this pandemic is something most of us can’t even comprehend.
“When they come to us, basically they are very sick, they look like a fish out of water, they can’t breathe. They’re pleading for help. You know the last thing they say before we intubate them is please don’t let me die and that is the hardest thing to hear,” Smith said.
Those concerned about the virus are always watching the numbers, but over the weekend in Missouri, watchers may have gotten quite a shock. Cases went from roughly 1,400 to 1,500 per day to more than 5,000 on Saturday alone.
Turns out that was likely a glitch in a new system, one they’re working to fix by Wednesday of this week.
In the meantime, Dr. Randall Williams with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services says it’s best to look at the bigger picture when it comes to COVID-19 cases.
“I would highly recommend looking at seven-day averages. Do not follow day to day with that degree of compulsivity,” Dr. Williams said.
In the meantime, Smith says COVID-19 patients are sicker and younger than they were in the beginning. She says her hospital is nearly at capacity and says it’s weighing heavily on medical workers everywhere.
“We’ve been the ones holding the hands of the dying because we can’t let family in. We are family at that minute for that patient that isn’t going to survive,” Smith said.
Smith says she feels most people continue to see the virus and wearing a mask as a huge inconvenience. She wishes that would change.
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