Entire Texas town essentially closes with nearly half its people hit by COVID-19

Iraan is a small town in west Texas that has 1,200 residents. The coronavirus pandemic has caused the town to shut down.
Vicky Zapata, a resident of the area, stated that she had previously experienced COVID but not at this level.

Jason Rybolt CEO of Iraan General Hospital said that 119 people had been tested for the virus, and 50 were positive. This is a 42% positive rate. CNN's Darren Brown, Iraan Mayor, stated that "this is very serious."

Rybolt stated that he is "very concerned about the community" and that he "very concerned about trying to ensure that they get the health care they need."

Rybolt stated that at least one Iraan resident was airlifted out of state to receive care due to a shortage of ICU beds in Texas. He stated that it could take up to 12 hours for coronavirus-stricken patients to be given a bed. It could take up to 36 hours. It's impossible to predict how long it will take.

Texas Governor. Greg Abbott continues to advocate against a mandatory statewide mask mandate as have many other U.S. states. According to state data, only 372 ICU beds are currently available in Texas. Iraan is located at least 100 miles from the nearest hospitals.

Tracy Canter, Superintendent of Iraan Sheffield Independent School District, stated in a public statement that school had to be closed after five days because approximately one quarter of staff and 16% students had been infected or exposed to coronavirus.

School has been delayed with no virtual classes available until Aug. 30, so the city council buildings are now closed. High school football, which is the town's lynchpin and mainstay, is also on hold.

This article first appeared on USA TODAY. Texas town Iraan closes school district almost entirely for COVID