Encouraging signs about COVID numbers in Austin but concerns remain

Encouraging signs of COVID numbers, but concerns remain

Officials say there have been some comforting signs of the outbreak, but beware that it only takes a day of social gatherings to set things in the wrong direction. John Krinjak of FOX 7 Austin has details.

In Texas and Austin in particular, there are some comforting signs of the COVID-19 outbreak after all kinds of vacation fluctuations have passed. However, health officials are warning that it will only take a day of social gatherings – like Super Bowl Sunday – to send these numbers in the wrong direction, so they will be closely monitoring these numbers over the coming days and weeks.

Over the weekend, the number of COVID-related hospital stays in Texas fell below 10,000 for the first time since December. In Austin, just 60 new hospital admissions are on the verge of moving from the Red Zone back to the Orange Zone on Friday.

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Many wonder if this will be the case at certain Super Bowl gatherings. The bars we stopped on Sunday, even though they were busy, seemed to follow protocols – by limiting capacity, putting up partitions, and making sure people stayed in their own groups. Austin Mayor Steve Adler urges the Austinites to continue to avoid gatherings and to remain vigilant despite encouraging numbers.

Regarding vaccines, Governor Greg Abbott touted the news on Twitter late Sunday that nearly 600,000 people had been vaccinated in the past four days. However, in our region, a total of nearly 40,000 people were vaccinated by Austin Public Health.

Health officials looking to improve COVID-19 vaccine distribution

Many across central Texas remain frustrated with the slow roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine, and local health officials are hoping to improve its spread with a new call center. John Krinjak of FOX 7 Austin has details.

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APH is expected to receive an additional 12,000 vaccinations this week, and officials say shots will soon be available through local CVS and Walgreens locations. Also, APH will set up a new call center starting Monday to contact people once they’re vaccinated, especially those over 80 who may not access email often.

Austin Mayor Steve Adler said he has been encouraged by talks with the Biden government and is optimistic that anyone who wants a vaccine can get it this summer. Visit austintexas.gov/covid19 for more information.

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