Apr 6, 2020
Texas State and Local Action on COVID-19
For a complete look at federal and state action related to the coronavirus, visit MWC’s Coronavirus (COVID-19) Facts and Resources website.
COVID-19 has created a fluid and rapidly evolving situation across the state of Texas. Below are the latest developments:
Governor Abbott issued the following statements during a 2:00 p.m. press briefing Monday:
- Texas currently has 7,319 cases, 140 deaths, 1,153 hospitalizations, 157 counties affected, and 85,357 tests have been performed. Abbott anticipates more than 100,000 will be tested by the end of the week. (For reference on 4/3 the numbers were: 5,478 cases; 91 deaths; 145 counties affected; 55,764 tests performed)
- Texas received 2.5 million masks in the past 24 hours, and will receive an additional 3 million masks by April 11th. A full update on PPE and where it is being distributed can be found here.
- DPS will be increasing enforcement by adding checkpoints at the Louisiana border. Anyone coming from Louisiana to Texas is subject to a 14-day quarantine if they are not in an exempt category.
- Abbott noted that the states should begin receiving funds from the federal government around April 24th.
- Texas currently has 21,033 hospital beds available to treat COVID-19; over 2,223 of those beds are ICU beds; 6,080 ventilators available (2,000 less than what was reported on Friday)
- A Texas City nursing home will be testing the effectiveness of hydroxychloroquine. Thirty patients are currently on their second day of treatment with the medication. More than 80 residents and employees have tested positive at the Texas City senior living facility.
Physician Assistants (PA), Medical Physicists, Perfusionists, and Respiratory Care License Waivers
Governor Greg Abbott has temporarily waived certain regulations to expand the health care workforce to assist with Texas' COVID-19 response. Under this waiver, Physician Assistants (PA), Medical Physicists, Perfusionists, and Respiratory Care candidates for licensure who have completed all other requirements may enter the workforce under an emergency license working under supervision prior to taking the final licensure examination. The Governor's waiver also provides for emergency licensees to undergo name-based background checks in place of fingerprint checks while fingerprint checks are unavailable due to the crisis.
Additionally, the Governor's waiver allows more flexibility between physicians and the PAs and Advance Practice Registered Nurses they supervise including allowing for oral prescriptive delegation agreements to enable rapid deployment of those practitioners during the emergency.
Child Care Assistance for Frontline Workers
Governor Greg Abbott today announced that Care.com is increasing in-home child care access for frontline workers responding to the COVID-19 emergency. As part of this initiative, Care.com is offering 90 days of free, premium access to their services, along with specific portals for frontline workers and caregivers in Texas.
Frontline workers looking for child care as well as prospective caregivers can both enroll at https://texasfrontline.care.com/. Potential caregivers are subject to Care.com’s extensive background and safety checks. While child care services are not typically free of charge, the Texas portal gives residents the ability to waive their fees and volunteer as caregivers, providing additional support to frontline workers.
HHSC Expands WIC Options
Texas Health and Human Services announces Texas WIC, the special supplemental nutrition program for women, infants, and children, is expanding the number of food items eligible for purchase through the program. It is also updating the MyTexasWIC app to ensure Texans who need access to nutritious food will be able to find it in their local grocery stores.
Effective immediately, there are additional options for certain food items WIC participants can buy. These food items include more options for milk, bread, rice, pasta and eggs. In addition, Texas WIC is permanently adding canned fruits and vegetables to the food package. Items at the grocery store with a pink sticker that says “WIC Approved” are products eligible for shoppers to purchase using WIC. Texas WIC website
Governor Abbott Declarations
City of Houston COVID-19 Updates
City of Dallas COVID-19 Updates
City of San Antonio COVID-19 Updates
City of Austin COVID-19 Updates
City of Laredo COVID-19 Updates
City of El Paso COVID-19 Updates
City of Fort Worth COVID-19 Updates
City of Arlington COVID-19 Updates
City of McAllen/Hidalgo County COVID-19 Updates
City of Corpus Christi COVID-19 Updates
City of Lubbock COVID-19 Updates
Brazos County COVID-19 Updates
City of Waco COVID-19 Updates
Current Shelter-in-Place Orders
- Cities and counties have been defining critical infrastructure and essential workers for their emergency orders based on guidance from the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA). The CISA guidelines can be found here.
- Texas Statewide Shelter-in-Place Order is in place from March 31st to April 30th
- 104 out of the 254 counties in Texas have enacted shelter-in-place orders. These counties account for 90% of the total population in Texas.