COVID-19 Live Blog: San Antonio Sees First Day Of Mandatory Masks

Texas Public Radio is updating the latest information on COVID-19 in the San Antonio area, along with how local businesses are adjusting, how you can help those in need and what you can do to stay entertained at home. TPR is also providing live updates on the Rio Grande Valley.

Here’s what we know …

Monday, April 20

12 a.m. — Mandatory mask policy goes into effect

All Bexar County residents over the age of 10 will be required to wear a mask covering their nose and mouth when out in public.

The covering can be a mask or cloth of some kind. San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg advises residents to not buy N95 surgical masks in order to preserve them for health care providers and first responders.

The masks must be worn in public spaces where the proper distance of at least 6 feet can’t be maintained.

Residents who violate the requirement may be issued a citation and could face a fine up to $1,000. Violations will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Sunday, April 19

6:13 p.m. — City crosses 1,000 mark with 1,015 total confirmed cases today

Mayor Ron Nirenberg reported the total number of confirmed COVID-19 cases in Bexar County climbed to 1,015 as of Sunday. Nirenberg also confirmed an additional death, bringing the death toll to 39.

The most recent death was a Hispanic man in his 70s with underlying health issues. The patient was a resident at Southeast Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, the center of a local coronavirus outbreak. This marks the 18th death among the facility’s residents.

Five additional inmates at the Bexar County Jail are also among the most recent to test positive for the virus, according to Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff. The latest cases brings the total number of confirmed cases among inmates to 20.

Nirenberg asked that citizen comply with the mandatory mask rules and take seriously the importance of social distancing.

“What you’re doing is saving lives. We’re keeping people healthy,” Nirenberg said after thanking citizens for doing their part by staying home.

The number of community spread cases and close contact cases are the leading cause of the spread.

Health officials are calling for blood and plasma donations.  Contact the South Texas Blood & Tissue Center to make an appointment.

Call 3-1-1 for testing information.

To read yesterday’s entire COVID-19 brief, click here.

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