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May 22, 2018

How 3 Texas hospitals responded to Friday's deadly school shooting

Daily Briefing

    Three Texas-based hospitals sprang into action to treat patients who were injured during a shooting Friday at a high school in Santa Fe, Texas, that saw 10 people killed and more than a dozen others wounded.

    The shooting

    Friday morning, 17-year-old Dimitrios Pagourtzis allegedly walked into Santa Fe High School, where he was a student, armed with a shotgun and revolver and opened fire. Eight students and two staff members were killed.

    Pagourtzis also reportedly placed explosive devices, such as pipe bombs and pressure cookers at the school, though none were functional, according to Mark Henry, Galveston County Magistrate. Henry said Pagourtzis surrendered himself to police after a 15-minute firefight. Pagourtzis was arrested on murder charges.

    The hospitals that treated the victims

    Three area hospitals received at least a dozen patients injured in the shooting, according to the American Hospital Association (AHA).

    Clear Lake Regional Medical Center in Webster received at least seven patients, the University of Texas Medical Branch (UTMB) Health's John Sealy Hospital in Galveston received three patients, and Mainland Medical Center in Texas City received two patients.

    Mainland Medical Center in an update Friday on Facebook said it had discharged the two patients it received following the shooting.

    On Sunday, Clear Lake Regional Medical Center in a tweet said the hospital's medical staff were continuing to care for shooting victims. The hospital said one student remained in "serious condition with multiple gunshot wounds," and another victim was "in good condition after being shot." The hospital had discharged the other patients.

    During a press conference on Friday, David Marshall, CNO and patient care officer for UTMB Health said that staff members were "busy taking care of these patients and standing by ready for other patients to come in." The hospital on Saturday said it had discharged one of the three patients it received following the shooting.  On Tuesday, UTMB tweeted an adult male patient remained in critical condition while an adult female patient was in good condition.

    AHA President and CEO Rick Pollack said, "We applaud the life-saving efforts of these caregivers and first responders, who sprang into action to treat the victims of this heinous act of violence." He continued, "In times of tragedy, the women and men of America’s hospitals and health systems respond with expert care and compassion for the victims, their families and the entire community."

    Call for blood donations

    In a tweet Friday, the Gulf Coast Regional Blood Center asked for blood donations, saying that they had "been requested to provide platelets and O-negative red cells to area facilities." Prospective donors were encouraged to visit the blood center's website to schedule an appointment to donate.

    Widower's treatment is funded after wife's death in shooting

    One of the shooting's victims, Cynthia Tisdale, who was a teacher at the high school, had spent the last two years working two jobs to help cover medical expenses for her husband, William Tisdale, who has idiopathic pulmonary fibrosis.

    Friday's shooting has brought new awareness to her husband's life-threatening illness and a GoFundMe campaign launched earlier this year to raise awareness for an experimental stem cell treatment.

    While donations to the GoFundMe campaign for his treatment had initially been slow, donations spiked after people learned about Cynthia and her "devotion" to William, according to CNN. As of Monday morning, the campaign had exceeded its original $30,000 goal. William now has enough money for the stem cell treatment and possibly a lung transplant (Bean, Becker's Hospital Review, 5/18; Jordan, Houston Chronicle, 5/18; Hanna et al., CNN, 5/19; Hampton/Seba, Reuters, 5/18; Romo et al., "The Two-Way," NPR, 5/19; Healy, et. al., New York Times, 5/19; Vera, CNN, 5/22; UTMB Health tweet, 5/21; AP/NBC4, 5/19; AHANews, 5/21; Horton, "To Your Health," Washington Post, 5/21; Criss, CNN, 5/21; Clear Lake Regional Medical Center tweet, 5/20).

    From shootings to hurricanes: How can your hospital prepare for disasters?

    Hospitals must be prepared for myriad disasters that can stress health care systems to the breaking point and disrupt delivery of vital health care services.

    Advisory Board has compiled step-by-step procedures for various threats your facility may encounter—though we hope you'll never need to use them.

    Download the Resources

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