San Antonio Health Director On COVID-19 Testing, Case Data, Working Groups, Order Enforcement
At least 554 coronavirus cases and 20 deaths had been confirmed in San Antonio as of Wednesday evening.
There are 132 travel related, 193 close contact and 155 community transmission cases. Seventy-four are still under investigation.
The area's case count continues to tick up as more people are able to get tested. Public health officials amended the criteria on Friday to allow COVID-19 testing for symptomatic individuals without a physician's referral, which had previously been required.
COVID-19 Community Action working groups have been established by the City of San Antonio and Bexar County to develop relief and recovery strategies in response to the economic blow dealt by the pandemic.
Separately, prevention and response teams will focus on the medical aspect of preventing COVID spread and community engagment in virus hot spots.
Mayor Nirenberg's March 24 stay-at-home order required closure of non-exempt businesses and an addendum outlined measures of enforcement for those choosing not to comply. Since then, a reported 1,138 warnings and 38 citations have been issued to businesses in violation of the public health emergency declaration.
What can a breakdown of local case data tell us about who is most at risk and existing health disparities? What's being done to prevent additional community spread in COVID hot spots? How will new working groups help with these efforts?
If more progress isn't made toward flattening the curve in San Antonio, will enforcement be ramped up to dissuade individuals from violating the stay-at-home order?
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*This interview was recorded on Thursday, April 9.