Virus cases stabilize, follow DSHS forecasts

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'We can get control of this,' chief medical officer says

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There was continued good news in the most recent numbers reported by local officials. Just one COVID-19 patient is hospitalized at Hill Country Memorial and numbers leveled off from last week’s count.

Dr. Jim Partin, chief medical officer at HCM, said the numbers are amazingly following the trend line forecast by the Region 8 Department of State Health Services.

In mid-July, the numbers showed continued infection levels until early August, then a leveling off and drop that would continue until early September.

“It’s amazing that they are tracking right along with those forecast models,” Partin said Tuesday. “They are continuing to track lower and lower and it’s possible we can get control of this.”

Partin said it was encouraging, but also the hopeful scenarios were predicated on “not doing anything stupid,” such as ignoring precautions and opening up areas too soon.

The doctor said everyone is anxious about the return to school, but that infections from school resuming won’t be known for two to three weeks.

“We’ll see how that affects us,” he said.

Partin was encouraged by how New York, once the epicenter of viral outbreaks, had tamped down infections.

“That shows it can be done,” he said.

 

School safety

Though anxiety about schools reopening has been felt across Texas, Partin had words of praise for the Fredericksburg High School Health Occupation Students of America (HOSA) club.

Students from that organization produced a short video that encouraged safe behaviors to avoid spreading the virus.

In the video, students stressed washing hands, avoiding large groups, and the correct wearing of masks. The video is being shown in classes and in the cafeteria.

“If we want a chance to have a normal school year, we have to do all of these things,” one student said.

The FHS HOSA club is led by faculty member Lisa Ballard.

“The students have done a good job of trying to teach their peers,” Partin said.

 

Testing

The City of Fredericksburg announced another public testing, to be held from 8 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 29 at the basketball pavilion near the H-E-B parking lot.

Check the city website at www.fbgtx.org for more information and registration.