COVID-19 Latest: Austin Public Health Site To No Longer Test People Without Symptoms

KUT Staff

This post has local news on the coronavirus pandemic from Monday, June 29. If you have a news tip or question, email us at news@KUT.org.

Austin Public Health goes back to testing only people with symptoms

People who aren’t showing COVID-19 symptoms can no longer get tested for the coronavirus due to a shortage of tests, Austin Mayor Steve Adler said. Local public health officials and city leaders had been encouraging everyone to get tested, whether they had symptoms or not. 

Adler said Friday that Austin Public Health’s testing sites are seeing a high demand for testing.

​“Dr. [Mark] Escott is now saying that not everybody can get tested,” he said. “We are going to go back to only testing people who are symptomatic because we frankly don’t have enough testing capability. And the tests aren’t coming back quickly enough.”

Adler said people are having to wait up to five days before getting their test results, so patients who are positive aren’t self-isolating fast enough.

He urged people with health insurance to get tested through their medical provider instead of the city to make sure uninsured patients get priority. 

Travis County is reporting a cumulative total of 8,461 coronavirus cases. That case count is up 636 cases from the day before – the largest day-over-day change so far. The death toll from COVID-19 remains at 117.

The city and county saw a record number of new hospital admissions Sunday: 60. That raises the seven-day average of new hospital admissions to 52. Local public health officials say hospitals will be overwhelmed if the number of hospitalizations continues to rise.

The Central Texas Food Bank is distributing groceries to families today

The Central Texas Food Bank is handing out emergency food boxes today to families financially impacted by COVID-19.

People can receive grocery items, including produce, cereal, milk, meat and eggs. Drivers are asked to make space in their vehicles. There will be a separate line for people who walk or take the bus.

The food distribution will be behind Navarro Early College High School on Payton Gin Road between 183 and North Lamar from 10:30 a.m. until 12:30 p.m. 

What’s happening statewide? Check out special coverage from KERA for North Texas, Houston Public Media, Texas Public Radio in San Antonio and Marfa Public Radio.

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