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12 p.m.: The second government-backed testing heart within the Houston area is ready to open Saturday in Baytown, Chronicle reporter Dylan McGuinness writes.
The location, operated by Harris County, opens at 1 p.m. however will solely check first responders and medical staff who’re experiencing signs.
County officers have requested information organizations to not disclose the location’s location as a result of members of most of the people can’t present up for a check. The individuals who qualify have been notified already, county officers mentioned.
Later, they plan to broaden companies for high-risk residents displaying signs.
The same website operated by town has already begun providing checks for seniors over 65 with signs. There’s a screening course of together with a questionnaire and a telephone name earlier than metropolis officers grant permission to indicate up.
Two extra websites are anticipated — one every for town and county — as extra provides turn into obtainable.
Personal teams, together with United Methodist Medical Heart and Legacy Neighborhood Well being, are additionally providing checks for individuals with signs. United Methodist Medical Heart mentioned in a press release Friday evening that seven out of 105 checks got here again optimistic.
It’s unclear whether or not these instances have been included in metropolis and county counts.
And because the Chronicle’s Jordan Rubio explains in a chart, 1000’s of Texans acquired examined on Friday, a pointy reversal of declining testing numbers over the past week.
Innowatts, a Houston-based power analytics firm, predicts that every day residential power use throughout the coronavirus outbreak will enhance by 6 to eight % as extra individuals keep dwelling from work and youngsters are dwelling from faculty.
Total, energy use is anticipated to drop as eating places, workplace buildings, retailers and different companies shut. Electrical energy demand from colleges will doubtless drop by 30 %, and industrial buildings are anticipated to chop their electrical energy consumption by 21 %, in line with Innowatts.
11:15 a.m.: A number of Houston-area public well being departments have arrange name facilities to ask questions on signs, testing and different COVID-19 info.
- Metropolis of Houston: 832-393-4220 (9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Monday via Friday, 9 a.m. to three p.m. Saturday)
- Harris County: 832-927-7575 (9 a.m. to 7 p.m. day by day)
- Fort Bend County: 281-633-7795 (Eight a.m. to five p.m. Monday via Friday)
- Montgomery County: 936‐523‐5040
- Brazoria County: 979-864-2167 (10 a.m. to six p.m. Monday via Friday, 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday)
- Galveston County: 409-938-7221, choice 1
10:51 a.m.: A fourth particular person has been identified with COVID-19 in Matagorda County, in line with the county regional medical heart.
The lady is between the ages of 75 and 85, and has not traveled outdoors the county. She is in honest situation, in line with the Matagorda County Hospital District.
Eight individuals in Matagorda County have examined destructive and 42 checks are pending as of Saturday morning.
10:33 a.m.: An extra testing website is coming to Cypress, U.S. Sen. John Cornyn introduced on Twitter.
The location might be open on Saturday, he mentioned.
The Texas Well being and Human Companies Fee is anticipated to open two extra websites in Dallas and San Antonio subsequent week.
10:15 a.m.: Houston resident Miah Arnold began feeling the chills and a migraine. Then, the three foremost signs of COVID-19: a low fever, cough and respiratory issues.
HHS has confirmed an extra community-based testing website might be be opened on March 21st in Cypress. HHS can also be anticipating standing up two extra websites in Texas within the subsequent week, one in San Antonio and one in Dallas.
— Senator John Cornyn (@JohnCornyn) March 21, 2020
It took three calls, however a nurse lastly acquired Arnold a telehealth appointment together with her doctor at Baylor. Not lengthy after, he ordered her a drive-thru check.
Arnold writes about what it was like to get a four-minute nasal swab check.
9:45 a.m.: Hospitals have more and more barred or restricted entry to sufferers as COVID-19 spreads, forcing chaplains and others who minister to the severely ill or the elderly to maneuver their conversations on-line, the Chronicle’s Robert Downen stories.
Know-how has made it potential for chaplains to nonetheless join with individuals on the finish of their lives, nevertheless it’s work that depends on physique language and different social cues which can be notably tough to convey over a display.
Greater than something, they anxious about morale, and easy methods to proceed doing their work amid a lot uncertainty and chaos. Not being with sufferers “goes in opposition to my coronary heart and soul,” mentioned one chaplain.
“The very factor that we’re referred to as to expertise as human beings — relationships — is that which this virus is attempting to decrease,” mentioned one other.
9:00 a.m.: Houston’s police chief blasted a Harris County judge’s decision to launch an individual arrested on suspicion of homicide on bond on Twitter.
“Activism by officers locations society and people beforehand detained at higher danger,” Chief Artwork Acevedo mentioned.
A lawyer for 29-year-old David Cruz requested for a bond discount on Monday, citing the possibility that COVID-19 may “unfold like wildfire,” Chronicle reporter Gabrielle Banks writes.
Sheriff Ed Gonzalez mentioned Saturday morning the county jail system doesn’t have “capability” for intensive care, and restricted house for quarantine.
“Now we have no say in particular person selections judges make of their courtrooms,” Gonzalez mentioned in a tweet.
8:25 a.m.: Companies throughout the state are closing to try to gradual the unfold of the brand new coronavirus. Texas’ unemployment compensation fund might not be ready for the ensuing mass layoffs.
have the capability to deal with an outbreak within the jail and the anticipated wants of the overall neighborhood. On releases my crew is concerned with, we’ve enhanced our discharge planning to organize for transition .
— Ed Gonzalez (@SheriffEd_HCSO) March 21, 2020
Because the Chronicle’s Erin Douglas writes, federal information exhibits that the state has lower than six months of reserves to pay unemployment insurance coverage at recession-level charges.
Between Sunday and Wednesday, Texas obtained greater than 61,500 first-time unemployment insurance coverage claims, in line with the Texas Workforce Fee, greater than 4 instances the filings throughout an identical interval in 2019.
And practically 30 % of the claims got here from staff within the higher Houston area.
7:45 a.m.: As of Friday, 107 individuals within the eight-county higher Houston space have examined optimistic for COVID-19, the sickness brought on by the brand new coronavirus, and 5,277 individuals in Texas have been examined for the virus, in line with state data.
The higher Houston area noticed the biggest single-day enhance in instances on Friday with 33 new instances, together with two new instances reported round 9 p.m. by Montgomery County officers
The Houston Well being Division is anticipated to broaden testing at its first drive-thru testing website on Saturday. Seniors 65 and older who exhibit signs of a fever, cough and issue respiratory can name the division for screening at 832-393-4220.
You have to obtain a singular ID code from the division to go in for testing.
For up-to-date monitoring of the unfold of the novel coronavirus in Texas, go to houstonchronicle.com/coronavirus.
— Houston OEM (@HoustonOEM) March 21, 2020