Pearland - Friendswood Edition | June 2020

PEARLAND FRIENDSWOOD EDITION

VOLUME 6, ISSUE 7 | JUNE 12 - JULY 16, 2020

ONLINE AT

“IF YOUWOULDHAVE GONE TO THE EMERGENCY ROOMPRE - COVID, YOU SHOULDGO TO THE ER. WEWANT TOMAKE SUREWE’RE TAKING CARE OF THE COMMUNITIESWE’RE IN.” LAUREN COTTON, CHIEF OPERATING OFFICER OF NEIGHBORS EMERGENCY CENTERS HEALTHCARE EDITION

Since the spread of the coronavirus began in Houston, routine medical trips and trips to the emergency room have declined signi fi cantly. Local doctors and medical workers encourage patients to keep up with regular care.

The city of Pearland has come up with a plan for residents to pay o ff water usage that has yet to be billed. The amount each individual resident owes can be requested. Otherwise, residents will pay over the next two years. Here is the cost split over every home in the city if all homes used the same amount of water. SOURCES: CITY OF PEARLAND, U.S. CENSUS BUREAU / COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

$6million Money to be collected 39,527 Number of households in Pearland $151.79 Amount each household owes in bills

Pearland to correct water billing error Outside review fi nds lack of policy, communication

PAPAR FAIRCLOTH / COMMUNITY IMPACT NEWSPAPER

Doctors, emergency rooms, hospitals adapt to serving patients during the coronavirus pandemic

BY HALEY MORRISON

After some citizens accused the city of Pearland for a lack of transparency regarding a discrepancy in its water billing system, the city had an outside report conducted by Olson & Olson to look into how the gap in billing and meter reading occurred. The fi ndings, released in April, reported the billing discrepancy was a failure of manage- ment and policy within the city. Since mid-2018, water meters had CONTINUED ON 24

said Neighbors ERs experienced an almost 30% decrease in volume since the beginning of the pandemic in America. Many patients are afraid by seeking help they will expose them- selves to the coronavirus. “It’s certainly concerning for health care providers because looking back at the reasons people come to the ER, most of those are completely

non-COVID related,” Cotton said. Dr. Carl Vartian, the chief medical o ffi cer for the HCA Houston Health Care Clear Lake and Mainland loca- tions, said there has been a nation- wide decrease in heart attack and stroke patients coming to hospitals or emergency rooms for treatment.

BY MORGAN SLUTZKY

Several months into the COVID- 19 pandemic, health care systems are grappling with how best to serve noncoronavirus patients in a time when people may be afraid to seek medical treatment. Lauren Cotton, the chief operating o ffi cer of the Greater Houston-based Neighbors Emergency Centers,

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HEALTH CARE EDI T ION 2020

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