‘Miracles have happened.’ Houston family fighting for long-term care for loved one battling COVID-19

KINGWOOD, Texas – Tammy Smith and her family are in the midst of a whirlwind due to COVID-19.

Doctors transported her husband Craig out of state, nearly 1,500 miles away, to be treated for COVID pneumonia.

“Really hard. We do have family there,” Smith said, referring to the location her husband was flown to. “Miracles have happened to get him to where he is going.”

The 45-year-old was diagnosed with COVID two weeks ago. Smith said her husband was receiving very good care at Kingwood Emergency Hospital but his condition deteriorated rapidly and he needed long-term care.

The calls to other hospitals across the Houston area, as well as facilities in at least seven other states and Washington, D.C., yielded, no results due to a combination of issues.

“We’re in this position where, whether I was hearing that there were beds but no nurses to care for them,” she recounted. “Whether beds were just gone and you couldn’t get to them.”

To add stress to their ordeal Tammy Smith hasn’t been able to speak to her husband since Sunday -- the day before he was intubated and placed on a respirator. She says what may have benefited her family the most in their situation is having better guidance from the medical community on how to walk through the process before conditions get dire.

“I hate that any other family’s in that situation where they’re having to feel desperate at the moment that it’s gotten too bad because they couldn’t get help before,” Smith said.

To make matters even worse Tammy Smith and two of her children also have been diagnosed with COVID. However, their symptoms have been mild compared to their father’s.

The family was discussing whether or not to get vaccinated before being diagnosed.

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