The San Antonio area continues to see modest increases in COVID-19 cases, but there were no new deaths reported Tuesday and the number of people in the hospital remains stable, Mayor Ron Nirenberg said at the daily city-county briefing.
There were 32 new cases, pushing the total to 1,307, Nirenberg said. The death toll stood at 44.
The mayor said 56 people with novel coronavirus were in the hospital, three fewer than Monday. Of those,33 were in intensive case and 16 were on ventilators.
“Our hospital numbers continue to trend well,” Nirenberg said.
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Nirenberg and County Judge Nelson Wolff once again urged area residents to maintain 6-foot social distancing and to wear face coverings when they’re out in public and can’t be sure of staying at least 6 feet away from others, especially as retail stores and restaurants start opening again under Gov. Greg Abbott’s new orders.
“We are very grateful for all the cooperation,” Nirenberg said. “It’s showing up in our numbers.”
Abbott is letting his stay-at-home order expire Thursday and will institute new directives Friday that allow retail stores, restaurants and movie theaters to open Friday but only at 25 percent of their maxium capacities as determined by the fire marshal.
While numerous stores and restaurants plan to open for the weekend, none of the movie theaters in Bexar County will open Friday. Officials at all of the chains said it will take time to prepare their facilities to ensure the reduced capacity restriction will be met and proper health precautions can be taken.
The governor’s new order also allows museums and libraries to open, but none of the ones in the San Antonio area plan to do so this week.
Data from health departments indicates surrounding counties such as Comal and Guadalupe have had strong recovery rates.
In Comal County, the home of New Braunfels, 52 people have tested positive for the virus since the beginning of the pandemic. Among those patients, 36 have recovered and six have died.
In Guadalupe County, where Seguin is located, 73 people have tested positive, and 36 of them have recovered. No deaths have been reported.
San Antonio Police Department reported that the number of sworn officers who have tested positive for the COVID-19 virus remains at six. The number of SAPD employees in quarantine has declined — only two sworn officers and three civilian employees were in isolation Tuesday.
The San Antonio Fire Department reported that 37 of its firefighters remain in quarantine, compared to 48 just four days ago. That means 11 more returned to work. Only six have tested positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic started.
Elizabeth Zavala covers county and state courts in San Antonio. To read more from Elizabeth, become a subscriber. firstname.lastname@example.org | Twitter: @elizabeth2863