Texas Governor Greg Abbott has held a series of press conferences since last week regarding the recent spike in COVID-19 cases. With more than 5,000 cases in one day marking the highest spike yet, new guidelines and closures have been issued.
"Our goal is to keep Texans out of the hospital and reduce the number of positives,” Governor Greg Abbott said during the press conference.
The numbers have increasing at a drastic rate since Memorial Day weekend, when the first Phase of re-opening Texas began. According to Governor Abbott, in late May there were around 1,500 cases a day on average and in the past week the average of new cases is totaling more than 3,500 per day. In late May the rate of new cases was sitting around 4.5% and this week it is sitting at around 9%. There were around 1,600 hospitalizations related to COVID-19 in late May and over the past week, there have been more than 3,200 a day.
“The numbers are growing at an unacceptable rate and must be corralled,” Governor Abbott said.
Governor Abbott reiterated that closing down businesses and the state is a last resort. He encouraged Texans to adhere to the safety protocols to help reduce the spread of COVID-19 throughout the state, including social distancing when possible and wearing face masks when social distancing is not possible. The use of proper hand sanitizing and washing your hands was highly encouraged. Those who are sick and/or exhibiting symptoms are encouraged to stay home. All Texans are encouraged to stay home if at all possible.
Governor Abbott mentioned that the appropriate authorities have been mobilized and are doing what is needed to help slow the spread. Recently, the TABC has been monitoring and revoking licenses from bars across the state who are not adhering to the capacity limitations. According to other media sources and data, there are 12 bars in the state of Texas who have had their TABC licenses revoked for breaking guidelines.
“We are surge testing in potential hotspots and working with the CDC and National Guard,” Governor Abbott said. “We are also working with hospitals across the state to ensure their ability to treat anyone who comes in with COVID-19”
Keeping Texas open and slowing the spread is the goal and Governor Abbott encourages all Texans to do their part.
For more information about re-opening Texas, visit open.texas.gov.