AUSTIN, Texas - In a weekly briefing Wednesday, Austin Public Health warned of a possible second wave of COVID-19 next month.
“The models along with the UT model, are all suggesting beginning mid-June toward the end of June we may see a significant increase in cases and hospitalization," said interim public health authority Dr. Mark Escott.
However, Dr. Escott said models are simply that. They are not set in stone.
“The models aren't predicting the absolute future. It's important to know we can change what that future looks like,” he said.
That means continuing social distancing, wearing marks, and personal choices. Escott said Austin flattened the curve, but it's important not to get too comfortable. A surge in cases can increase hospitalizations.
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“It also points to the chief concern that we have, and the chief concern is overwhelming our healthcare system,” said Escott.
Health officials also expressed concern over bar crowds. They hope they can get information to bar owners.
“Our folks have the ability to go out and we want to be educational and provide that information to them about the safety of how logistically they should set up their business,” said Stephanie Hayden, director of Austin Public Health.
There is another concern about clusters of cases popping up in construction sites and in the foodservice industry. “We are trying to work and develop an initiative where we can have some targeted outreach for those areas,” said Hayden.
Escott says if Austin residents can keep their guard up and practice proper protocol during these uncertain times, Central Texas can get through this.
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