Corpus Christi doctor discusses process of getting a rabies vaccination

CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas — Dispatchers with the City of Corpus Christi have received several calls from people reporting coyote bites. According to some of callers, the hot spot is at our local beaches.

“He had a taste and realized I was too big to eat, and he just took off,” coyote victim Paul Benavidez said.

KRIS 6 News reporter Victoria Balderamma talked with Amanda De La Garza and Paul Benavidez a few days after theirclose encounter with a wild coyote. They’re laughing now, they said only because of what came next.

“We called 911 and this is when the cute story turned into a nightmare,” De la Garza said.

Frustration built as they raced to try and get help to try to find the rabies vaccine.

“The victim is the one responsible to make the phone calls and do X, Y and Z. When I tell you it doesn’t make a lot of sense it’s because it doesn’t make a lot of sense,” De la Garza said.

After a few phone calls looking for answers, Dr. Shwirtlich at Physicians Premiere explained the process of getting the shot.

“Flush it out and then call your local health department. They can direct you to the hospital that will have it or which facility has the immune globulin and that first dose and then have you pick up the packet it from them,” Shwirtlich said.

That’s a total of three steps. Shwirtlich said it’s much simpler to get treated now than it was in the past.

“It’s a simple process now nothing like in the past. In the past people were afraid to get it because it was like 5 shots into the abdomen,” Shwirtlich said.

In Paul’s case he had to pick up the vaccine from the State Health Department. That’s because most primary care physicians don’t carry the expensive shot.

“Its extremely expensive to create and produce so by keeping it centralized they produce enough to use enough promptly before it expires,” Shwirtlich said.

Paul’s primary care physician than administered the show. That was followed by more shots around the bite mark.

Anyone whose been bite should certainly seek medical attention or call the state health departments number at 956-444-3212.

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