At 11 a.m. today, Atascosa County Emergency Management Coordinator David Prasifka held a press conference to discuss a COVID-19 update in Atascosa County.
“There have been a lot of changes regarding COVID-19 including the rapid increase in cases,” he said.
Between Wednesday and Thursday, Atascosa County’s total number of COVID-19 cases went up from 48 to 51. Broken down, there are seven active cases with 42 recovered and two deaths.
“For a county our size, that’s pretty good when compared to the surrounding counties our size,” said Prasifka.
Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Atascosa County has completed 1,247 tests including those from doctors’ offices, clinics and urgent care facilities. Of that, the county conducted 263 tests with the Texas military during their five drive-thru testing sites in Poteet, Pleasanton, Lytle, Leming and Charlotte that were free to the public. Prasifka stated he is looking to set up a walk-in testing site but has not yet confirmed the details.
“We do have a few facilities here in the county who are offering testing, but fees do apply. Those include the Atascosa Health Center, Urgent Care and Dr. Michael McFarland’s office. Please be sure to call these facilities first, before you visit them for testing.”
Prasifka further added that he meets with Atascosa County Judge Bob Hurley and EMS Director Don Penny every morning at 8:30 a.m. to have a COVID-19 meeting.
“We want to maintain the health and safety of our first responders as much as we can,” said Prasifka. “They are the ones who are dealing with the public and we want to make sure they are prepared as much as possible.”
DSHS updates and probable cases
Atascosa County receives its COVID-19 updated case numbers from the Texas Department of State Health Services. Prasifka then sends out an update on the Atascosa County Emergency Management Facebook page as well as through the county’s mass communication system, I-info. Updates are sent to Prasifka every weekday at 5 p.m. then sent out to the community.
DSHS will be adding to their daily updates with the additions of pending investigations and probable cases. The latter resembles those who are taking care of or live in the same household of a person who has tested positive for COVID-19.
“It’s probable that they will get COVID-19 as well since they are around the person who tested positive.”
As of Thursday evening, Atascosa County has 14 pending cases of COVID-19.
“With Father’s Day coming up this weekend, we are asking that people be smart and not be celebrating with a bunch of family as usual. Hopefully this will be the last Father’s Day we spend like this, but for now, we have to be diligent in our efforts to slow the spread.”
DSHS has reported that Atascosa County has community spread of COVID-19 now.
“While we are not, cannot and will not make it mandatory, we are encouraging everyone to wear a face mask or covering when out in the public,” said Prasifka.
Governor Greg Abbott announced that Texas will enter into Phase III today by opening carnivals and amusement parks. On Thursday, the state of Texas reported a record of 3,511 daily cases.
Please continue to follow all CDC guidelines by washing your hands, using hand sanitizer, staying home if you are feeling sick and practicing social distancing of at least 6 feet apart. For more information, please visit the CDC website, www.cdc.gov or the DSHS website, www.dshs.state.tx.us.
You can also find more information about COVID-19 in Atascosa County by visiting the county website at www.atascosacounty.texas.gov. Follow the Atascosa County Emergency Management Office Facebook for more updates. You can also sign up for daily updates on your phone and email at www.I-info.com.
“We need to treat everyone as if they already have COVID-19,” said Prasifka. “The way I see it, I am doing my best to protect you from me by wearing a mask. All I ask is that you protect me from you by doing the same.”