More than a month has passed since Governor Greg Abbott lifted the state’s Maskman date and closed business restrictions, but at least for now, Texas has not been the epicenter of the coronavirus surge. There is also a prediction.
After Abbott announced that the COVID-19 restrictions would end on March 10, President Joe Biden called the decision a “major mistake” and said it reflected a “Neanderthal mindset.” Many other politicians thought the decision was premature and a way to distract people from the February winter storms and power outages that killed at least 111 Texas people.
“It’s time to open Texas 100%,” Abbott told Lubbock on March 2, joining Lubbock’s business leaders at a Mexican restaurant in Montelongo. “Everyone who wants to work should have a chance. Every business that wants to be open must be open.”
Public health experts said it was premature to complete the mission and the governor should have waited longer for more people to be vaccinated. Judge Glenn Whitley of Tarrant County said at the time that Abbott wanted to wait until after spring break, as holidays usually caused a surge with them.
However, Abbott’s decision seems to have paid off. Texas is stable due to a surge in cases in some states, such as Michigan. Since Abbott announced his decision, the daily number of cases has fallen by 58%, from 6,600 on Thursday to 2,800. Hospitalizations have declined by 48% and deaths continue to decline.
Hospitalizations in Tarrant and Dallas counties are expected to increase the same or slightly over the next three weeks, according to the UT Southwestern model.
Diana Cervantes, a professor of biostatistics and epidemiology at UNT Health Science Center, said vaccination, continuous masking, already immunized people, and warming weather are delaying the epidemic. ..
“I think they did some gambling, and it paid off,” she said.
As of Friday morning, Texas has residents over the age of 16, and Tarrant County is approaching one million doses. Experts predict herd immunity by mid-June In North Texas.
Cervantes cautions that surges can occur at any time.
Vinnie Taneja, Director of Public Health in Tarrant County, agrees with Cervantes. On Tuesday, he was worried about the spread of the virus. As of Friday, all infected people had infected at least one other person with the virus. In other words, the spread was expanding.
Taneja is also concerned that the sharp decline in case numbers, positive rates and hospitalizations is slowing, which may indicate that something is being brewed. He warned that COVID-19 is still in the community and people should continue to follow safety protocols.
Cervantes generally believes that most people take the virus seriously and have not abandoned their safety precautions. If anything, removing Maskman Date has made people want to be safer. On March 10, people did not immediately take off their masks and return to their pre-pandemic era, according to Cervantes. Most large companies such as Walmart, Target, Kroger, and HEB still need masks and other coronavirus protocols.
The UT Southwestern model relies heavily on how well people continue to mask and follow other protocols. The model quickly predicts a small rise in the case, but nothing was seen during the holidays and last summer. In the long run, this model predicts that the virus will die as vaccination efforts continue.
Macy Moore, co-owner of HopFusion AleWorks in the Near South Side, previously told Star-Telegram that he plans to do face covers in his business. But now he doesn’t do so to avoid quarrels with customers.
When Abbott announced, Moore was interviewed by CNN about his mask requirements. He said he was immediately threatened with murder.
“I’m tired of fighting,” he said.
But still, Moore said that 80% of customers wear masks. Most of his employees are vaccinated and need to wear a mask. Everyone he asks says they have been vaccinated, and it gives him peace.
Nora Palomino, manager of the Los Zarapes restaurant in northern Fort Worth, continues to need masks. She lost some patrons, but she said at least half of the incoming customers were already wearing masks. If you do not have one, we will prepare a mask.
Eliazar Salinas III, owner of Frezko Taco Spot in Fort Worth, didn’t need a mask when the order was gone because no other company needed it and it wasn’t worth fighting people.
Buildings require masks in Tarrant County and Fort Worth. Whitley believes that people are accustomed to wearing masks and are making the right choices not only for themselves but also for others.
“Most people came in believing that masks would make a difference,” Whitley said.