Gov. Abbott suspending elective surgeries in Travis County to expand hospital capacity

Texas Governor Greg Abbott has issued an executive order to suspend elective surgeries in Travis County and three other Texas counties: Bexar, Dallas, and Harris.

The governor says he's doing so to ensure hospital bed availability for COVID-19 patients as Texas is seeing an increase in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations.

Under the order, the governor directs all hospitals in these counties to postpone all surgeries and procedures that are not immediately, medically necessary to correct a serious medical condition or to preserve the life of a patient who without immediate performance of the surgery or procedure would be at risk for serious adverse medical consequences or death, as determined by the patient’s physician. 

RELATED: Medical professionals urge public to take COVID-19 threat seriously, follow safety measures

“As Texas faces a rise in COVID-19 cases, we are focused on both slowing the spread of this virus and maintaining sufficient hospital capacity for COVID-19 patients,” said Governor Abbott in a news release. “These four counties have experienced significant increases in people being hospitalized due to COVID-19 and today’s action is a precautionary step to help ensure that the hospitals in these counties continue to have ample supply of available beds to treat COVID-19 patients."

"As we work to contain this virus, I urge all Texans to do their part to help contain the spread by washing their hands regularly, wearing a mask, and practicing social distancing," the governor adds.

Gov. Abbott so far has resisted calls for a statewide mandate. He says he has faith in Texans to do the right thing when it comes to keeping each other safe.

RELATED: Abbott encourages Texans to wear masks in public, but is not ordering statewide mandate



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