NACOGDOCHES — Recent arctic temperatures, seasonal flu and respiratory syncytial virus, known as RSV, remain a three-fanged monster trying to prevent us from taking a nice deep breath of fresh air.

The monster seems a bit bigger this week with 14 patients at local hospitals testing positive for COVID-19 and the two intensive care units near capacity with 20 of the 22 beds filled. Two ICU patients are confirmed to have COVID, according to data from the Southeast Texas Regional Advisory Council. Six ICU patients with various medical issues are using ventilators to assist their breathing.

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