DALLAS (CBSDFW.COM) – Dallas health and county officials held a news conference to discuss the current coronavirus pandemic on August 10.

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins kicked off the discussion by saying, “The enemy is not Greg Abbott, it’s not each other, it’s not the unvaccinated. The enemy is the virus itself.”

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When it come to “the virus,” current COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations are on the rise in North Texas. As of August 9, 2021 Dallas County Health and Human Services has reported 796 additional positive cases in Dallas County, 718 confirmed cases and 78 probable cases.

Adult infectious disease expert Dr. Emma Dishner with the Dallas County Medical Society also spoke to reporters. She said the saddest part of her life the last two months has been treating unvaccinated, seriously ill COVID-19 patients.

“The vast majority of people I am seeing are unvaccinated. And almost exclusively those that are unvaccinated admitted to ICU,” said Dr. Dishner. “This is preventable. I see people every day and this could have been prevented.” She also said that plenty of the people getting admitted to the hospital are patients in their 30s without underlying health issues. Dallas County Health and Human Services Director, Dr. Philip Huang reiterated her statement.

“Currently the 18-49 age group is fastest growing group contracting COVID-19 in Dallas County,” said Dr. Huang. “The situation is critical.”

When asked about the number of children impacted as of late, Dishner said the ICU’s are full at pediatric hospitals.  “We are even starting to see breakthrough cases from vaccinated people. Vaccination helps to protect and your loved ones. I highly recommend vaccinating children under 12.”

Judge Jenkins praised Dallas ISD Superintendent Dr. Michael Hinojosa after his announcement Monday that the district is temporarily requiring students and staff to wear face masks.

Governor Greg Abbott is taking action short of lifting his emergency order banning county and local government entities from requiring the wearing of masks and social distancing to lower the COVID-19 risk. The governor has also directed the Texas Department of State Health Services to use staffing agencies to find additional medical staff from beyond the state’s borders since the delta wave is overwhelming current staffing resources.

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Abbott also sent a letter to the Texas Hospital Association to request that hospitals postpone all elective medical procedures voluntarily. He has directed the state health department and the Texas Division of Emergency Management to open additional COVID-19 antibody infusion centers to treat patients not needing hospital care and expand COVID-19 vaccine availability to the state’s underserved communities.

The Texas Health and Human Services Commission is now providing some $267 million in emergency Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program food benefits through August as well.

Dallas County’s current COVID-19 risk level is in the red ‘High Risk Transmission‘ zone. A total of 4,227 Dallas County residents have lost their lives due to COVID-19 illness.

 

 

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CBSDFW.com Staff