Mayor's COVID-19 Briefing

Aug 30, 2021 at 06:31 pm by WGNS

(MURFREESBORO)  On Monday evening (8/30/2021), Murfreesboro Mayor Shane McFarland held an open forum about the delta variant's impact on this community. He spoke with Ascension Saint Thomas Rutherford Hospital President and CEO Gordon Ferguson and Chief of Staff Dr. David Sellers.

Ferguson noted that this area was not being hit as hard as other states. He said that as of Monday (8/30/2021) there were 125 covid patients at Ascension St. Thomas Rutherford Hospital; 20 of them are in the Critical Care Unit (CCU) which has 32 beds, and 17 are on the ventilator. 


Dr. Sellars noted that the majority of the current coronavirus patients are much younger than when the pandemic began, and that 95 per cent have not been vaccinated. He underscored that the 5 per cent who had received their vaccination--the delta variant is not effecting them as seriously 

Mayor McFarland asked if the results from the "RAPID TEST" were as accurate at the PCR (polymerase chain reaction) test? 

Dr. Sellers commented, "If you took the rapid test and are still concerned that you have COVID-19, then you need to take the PCR test."

Dr. Sellers shared an August 16, 2021 study:  He compared statistics for Tennessee and Massachusettes, because the population of both states is similar. 

State   Citizens Vaccinated  COVID patients in hospital COVID patients in ICU   COVID Patients on ventilator
 Massachusettes  70%     402   82  38
 Tennessee  47%  2,236  708 519

NOTE: Tennessee and Massachusettes were compared because their populations are similar. 

Booster Shots

When asked about BOOSTER SHOTS, Ferguson said, "The hospital provided Pfizer covid vaccinations, and we have been told that the booster will be available toward the end of September." 

What should you do?

Ferguson concluded, "We continue to do what is felt logical at the hospital." 

He explained:  

  • wash your hands regularly with soap
  • practice social distancing
  • avoid crowds (the hospital caps meetings at 10 persons, and then they use something like Zoom)
  • wear a mask