Sheyla Moraes, an ICU nurse in Central Texas, in South Austin on Aug. 11, 2021.

Credit: Sophie Park/The Texas Tribune

(Audio unavailable. Click here to listen on

Sign up for The Brief, our daily newsletter that keeps readers up to speed on the most essential Texas news.

Like thousands of health care workers across the state, Sheyla Moraes – an intensive care nurse in Austin – is tired of seeing so much death as a result of the coronavirus pandemic. Despite her yearslong passion for helping the sickest patients, she’s turned down bonuses and other incentives to take additional shifts. In fact, she’s scaled back to working just a single ICU shift per week.

And this latest surge is the most frustrating yet for Moraes and her colleagues in the medical community, who say the current plight was preventable because of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Listen in the weekend edition of The Brief podcast.

Start your day with a quick take on the latest Texas politics and policy news. Follow us on iTunes, Google Play, Spotify, Amazon Echo or RSS.

Join us Sept. 20-25 at the 2021 Texas Tribune Festival. Tickets are on sale now for this multi-day celebration of big, bold ideas about politics, public policy and the day’s news, curated by The Texas Tribune’s award-winning journalists. Learn more.

The Texas Tribune

The Texas Tribune is the only member-supported, digital-first, nonpartisan media organization that informs Texans — and engages with them — about public policy, politics, government and statewide issues.

Leave a comment

Welcome to the discussion.

• Transparency. Your full name is required.

• Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.


• Don't Threaten. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated.

• Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.

• Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.

• Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article -- and receive photos, videos of what you see.

• Don’t be a troll. Don’t be a troll.

• Don’t post inflammatory or off-topic messages, or personal attacks.