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Local Health Officials discuss Gov. Abbott's new order expanding business capacities, nursing home visits

Another new development coming out of the order is that nursing homes will now allow loved ones to visit under certain conditions.

NUECES COUNTY, Texas — Governor Greg Abbott is allowing businesses to open at 75-percent capacity after using COVID-19 hospitalization guidelines of 15-percent capacity.

Research shows current hospitalizations across the state in comparison to what the numbers looked like back in the spring just before Phase One reopening began. Our numbers now are more than doubled the spring stats in most categories. 

Credit: 3News

Another graphic shows current hospitalizations in the Coastal Bend versus what it looked like in the spring. The numbers are a lot higher than what they were then.

Credit: 3News

"We’ve seen manageable levels at our hospitals and manageable levels in our community," Medical Director Emile Prot with Region 11 Department of State Health Services said. 

The manageable levels that she’s talking about reveals that our states numbers are trending upward right now. They are nearly double the daily values that we were seeing before that big surge took place in late June.

Credit: 3News

Dr. Prot said it’s important for businesses to maintain social distancing and require masks to be worn as we move into the 75-percent capacity.

"What we are promoting in any food establishment right now is the distancing between tables," Dr. Prot said. "We have seen CDC morbidity and mortality reports that there is a higher risk of people who were in a closed in establishment, going to restaurants and coffee shops. They have a higher risk of getting COVID-19 compared to those who are not.”

Another new development coming out of Gov. Abbott's announcement is that nursing homes will now allow loved ones to visit under certain conditions.

"If you have a COVID-19 patient or you have a COVID-19 staff member that was just diagnosed recently, you’re not gonna let any resident, family members in so you’re going to wait until you have basically a clean house for two weeks and then residents family members can start coming back in," Health Director Annette Rodriguez said. 

Rodriguez also told 3News that she would’ve rather seen the 75-percent capacity mandate delayed until early next year. That way officials would have a better handle on how bad the flu season turns out to be.