5 victims released from hospital, conditions improved for 3 others

Scott & White health officials provide patient updates during press conference Thursday morning (Frank Martinez/KXAN)

KILLEEN, Texas (KXAN) — Five patients were discharged from the hospital Thursday and the condition of three others previously in critical condition had improved, officials at Scott & White Hospital in Temple said.

The three patients who in critical condition were upgraded to serious condition, the hospital said. One other patient is listed in good condition.

According to what doctors said earlier Thursday, the victims who were in critical condition still have a long way to go before they are discharged. Still, they expressed high hopes for their patients and added they aren’t expecting any more deaths. Several survivors who are already awake are in good spirits and doctors may discharge them later today after a final assessment.

One of the people injured in the shooting lives in the Austin area. Maj. Patrick Miller grew up in New York State and now lives just outside of Austin. The 32-year-old’s family says he was shot in the stomach and has had one surgery with another one still to come.

“When our community is challenged, we rise to the occasion,” Dr. Stephen Sibbitt said addressing the crowd at the hospital.

Out of the nine victims of the shooting who were in the care of Scott and White Hospital, eight of them are male. Their ages range  from the low 20s to mid 40s.

“We’re fully open and staffed and ready to go,” Dr. Matt Davis added. “We have no need to divert and no compromise in our abilities.”

Dr. Alex Thompson, who was with the hospital when the Fort Hood shooting of 2009 happened said the situation for “jarring” for staff who had gone through this before. One easy solution is early detection.

What we now know about post traumatic stress disorder is that the earlier we’re able to address these things, the better,” Dr. Thompson said. “It’s been our focus as a department to work with Fort Hood to develop a quick access unit so that other members of that community can meet with professionals early on.”

Earlier on Thursday, Army Secretary John McHugh said the suspected gunman Ivan Lopez had not seen combat during his four-month tour in Iraq and was seen by a psychiatrist in April. Officials added this did not mean Lopez was not suffering from serious psychological problems — only that they did not appear to be combat related.


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