Friday, July 30, 2021

Austin-Travis County Marks the 900th Death Due to COVID-19

As the COVID-19 virus continues to surge, especially areas where vaccination rates are stagnating, Austin-Travis County yesterday surpassed the grim milestone of 900 COVID-19 deaths. 

Just this month in July, over 4,150 new, confirmed COVID-19 cases and 19 COVID-19-related deaths have been reported to Austin Public Health (APH). The data and science continues to show that vaccinations are the most effective available tool to prevent severe illness, death, and to stop the continued spread and mutation of this deadly disease.  

"We must work together to prevent more deaths from COVID-19," said Dr. Desmar Walkes, Austin-Travis County Health Authority. "One COVID-19 related death is too many; we are mourning 900 loved ones. I implore our community to get vaccinated and follow the basic precautions we know work: wear a mask, socially distance, wash your hands regularly, and stay home if you are sick."   

Local deaths range in age from people as young as 20 to over 80 years of age, but are concentrated among those who are over 60 years old. The APH surveillance dashboard provides more information on the demographics of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths. Although Austin-Travis County reached its milestone of vaccinating 70% of residents with one dose of the vaccine on July 7, the rate of vaccination has stalled in recent weeks. Hospitals have seen a surge of new cases and admissions among the unvaccinated. 

"One simple act can help avert needless tragedy. Get vaccinated," said Interim Austin Public Health Director Adrienne Sturrup. "The resources are in your neighborhood to protect you, your family, and your community. Whether it be vaccinations, testing, or masking - together, we can stop this pandemic now." 

Austin-Travis County is in Stage 4 of the Risk-Based Guidelines 

Austin-Travis County is currently in Stage 4 but could move to Stage 5 as hospitalizations continue rise.

The APH Risk-Based Guidelines chart outlines recommended behavior for individuals at different stages of community spread. The most recent guidelines recommend everyone, regardless of vaccination status, wear masks and follow the basic protocols of social distancing and handwashing.

These guidelines apply at gatherings, dining, shopping and traveling. Those unvaccinated should test for COVID-19 and if the test results are negative, and it is medically feasible, get the vaccine as soon as possible.

Testing Information - Showing symptoms? Exposed to a positive case? Get tested and quarantine.  

APH manages testing sites and mobile clinics across Austin and Travis County. Appointments are not required for the two testing sites currently open however, individuals are encouraged to schedule a COVID-19 testing appointment. 

Those who do not have access to the internet can call 3-1-1 to complete the assessment. Testing is also available through local pharmacies. Those with health insurance should call their doctor or insurance company to review their options.  

Vaccinations are free and at a location nearby. No identification is required. 

COVID-19 vaccinations are free and do not require identification nor insurance. Residents can locate providers in their area using Vaccines.gov or they can text their zip code to 438829 (822862 in Spanish) to find a nearby clinic.  

For additional business guidance, visit www.ATXrecovers.com for recommendations to help prioritize the health and safety of employees and customers.  

Additional information regarding COVID-19, testing, and vaccinations can be found at AustinTexas.gov/COVID19

July 4th, 2022: Independence Day Holiday Closures

  Several City of Austin offices and facilities will be closed today, Monday, July 4 in observance of Independence Day Parks and Recreation ...