Gov. Abbott: 83 COVID-19 cases and three deaths in Texas, 1,900 people being monitored

The number of cases of coronavirus in Texas continues to grow and state and local officials say more testing will be made available by the end of the week.

At a news conference, Governor Greg Abbott says that the number of COVID-19 cases in the state (as of March 18) stood at 83 across 23 counties. There have been three deaths and 1,900 people are being monitored.

The governor also said that he expects that by the end of the week there will be the ability to administer 15,000 to 20,000 tests.

Gov. Abbott made those announcements at a press conference in Tarrant County and was joined by Arlington Mayor Jeff Williams, Tarrant County Judge Glen Whitley, Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Commissioner John Hellerstedt, MD, and Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) Chief Nim Kidd.

The press conference was held after the news that an Arlington senior citizen had died from the coronavirus.

RELATED: Arlington senior citizen becomes first coronavirus-related death in North Texas

Tarrant County Public Health confirmed late Tuesday that the man who died on Sunday tested positive for the new coronavirus. He was a resident of the Texas Masonic Retirement Center in Arlington.  

RELATED:, FOX launches national hub for COVID-19 news and updates

Gov. Abbott also said that he met with health officials and that he believes there is a "plentiful" supply for the varying needs of those who need critical care and those who show moderate symptoms and need isolation due to the coronavirus. Those needs include beds and places where people would need to stay.

RELATED: Gov. Abbott outlines strategy to care for COVID-19 patients 'if every bed in the hospital is taken'

Currently one of the biggest needs is the ability to get a test. The Department of State Health Services  Commissioner Dr. John Hellerstedt says the main thing right now to get a test is that a person must be showing symptoms.


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