Dallas County Set To Report More Than 1,000 New Cases On Friday, Gov. Greg Abbott Issues A Statewide Order Requiring Masks And Much More.
As is the unfortunate norm lately, quite a bit has happened in the two days since we last checked in with current Coronavirus updates in North Texas.
Let’s take a look at some of the latest developments.
- On Thursday, Dallas reached a new record of 708 additional cases, which brings the total to 22,590 in the county. Thursday’s numbers are a steep climb from a count of 544 cases on Wednesday, with equal deaths of seven people each day. Over the past week, the Dallas-Fort Worth area had a positivity rate of 14% making it one of the highest in the country. To make matters worse, all four major Texas metros (Austin, DFW, Houston and San Antonio) were among the top five highest positivity rates in the nation.
.@DCHHS reports 708 cases today and 7 deaths. Today we reached 700 new #COVID19 cases for the first time and 387 total deaths. It took 92 days to reach 300 #COVID19 cases and it has taken 22 days since then to reach 700. pic.twitter.com/HqVzFjATC8
— Clay Jenkins (@JudgeClayJ) July 2, 2020
- Dallas County will report more than 1,000 new cases on Friday. On Thursday afternoon Dallas County Public Health Director Philip Huang announced the county will see another striking increase on July 3 as it will surpass a thousand cases heading into the Fourth of July weekend. “We cannot have another Memorial Day over this July Fourth weekend. If that happens, it will really be catastrophic,” Haung told the Dallas Morning News.
- Gov. Greg Abbott issued a statewide executive order enforcing masks. On Thursday, Greg Abbott ordered all counties with 20 or more positive cases in Texas to enforce mandatory mask use in all public businesses with limited exceptions. This news, of course, comes after Dallas County passed its own order requiring masks two weeks ago. Abbott’s order, however, includes a possible fine of up to $25o upon a second reported violation of not wearing a mask. You can read the full order here.
- Dallas-Fort Worth patients are waiting upwards of a week or more to receive their COVID-19 test results from community testing centers. A major delay in results is believed to be caused by a lack of reagents, a chemical needed to determine if a test is negative or positive. Parkland Hospital & Health System is experiencing delays in delivery of reagents due to high demand nation-wide. Currently, Parkland can run 2,500 tests in a day, and recently received a new machine that can run 3,00 additional tests, but at a five hour process versus the two hour process time of other equipment.
- Dallas County Health and Human Services has opened applications for the new Emergency Housing Assistance Program. This program provides short-term rental, mortgage and utility assistance to low income Dallas County residents who reside outside of the City of Dallas. Those interested need to complete a pre-screening application which closes Thursday, July 9 at 4 p.m. Visit their website for more information regarding requirements for the program.
- The City of Dallas and local nonprofits have teamed up to distribute 500k to support immigrant families who have been financially impacted by COVID-19. Open Society Foundations and the Office of Welcoming Communities and Immigrant Affairs established the Emma Lazarus Resilience Fund. The Communities Foundation of Texas will focus on distributing funds to families who cannot receive federal aid.
- Nine players and one coach from the FC Dallas soccer team tested positive for COVID-19 a week before the ‘MLS is Back Tournament’ is set to begin in Orlando, Florida. According to an FC Dallas statement, every member of the FC Dallas organization tested negative for the virus before departing to Orlando on Saturday. The Walt Disney World Resort, which is hosting the tournament, required everyone be tested upon arrival. It was then discovered that two players tested positive for the virus. Later, additional players and a coach on tested positive on Wednesday night. The remaining club is quarantined in their hotel rooms awaiting further test results.
- Face coverings are required by DFW Airport for all terminal guests and employees ahead of the holiday weekend. DFW Airport announced via its Twitter page on Wednesday that masks would be required by everyone in and out of the airport, including travelers from outside of Texas. The airport released a safety memo with more information.
We know the holiday weekend is tempting, especially at a time when we all want an escape from our hellish reality, but the consequences are simply too dangerous. Stay home and grill out in your backyard if need be — the constitution doesn’t specify your right to hit the lake for booze and fireworks — they’re only happening online, anyway.
And please, wash your damn hands and wear the damn mask. It’s easy.
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