3 cases of COVID-19 reported

The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Commissioner John Hellerstedt, M.D., issued an official press release to County Judge Carlos Urias last Friday announcing the first COVID-19 positive case in Culberson County. The information mentioned DSHS’ support of Culberson County in identifying any close contacts so they could be isolated and monitored.

Updated data from the DSHS dshs.texas.gov/coronavirus, as of press time, revealed an additional 2 positive cases dated June 23, bringing the total to 3 for the county. Culberson County residents had steered clear of the virus since DSHS began recording coronavirus cases on March 04, 2020, but local health officials warned that the deadly virus would infect our community eventually.

DSHS and Public Health Region 9/10 is reminding the public that it is conducting contact investigations on persons who have tested positive to determine possible exposure to others. If the health department has not contacted you, there is no need to take any action at this time. Governor Greg Abbott is recommending staying home if you are uncertain about your exposure.

Culberson County-Allamoore ISD has closed down all activities at the school building until further notice. This includes the meal delivery program, athletic conditioning programs, and summer school programs.

Guadalupe Mountains National Park remains temporarily closed until further notice. All trails, camping, and backcountry use are prohibited. Please visit the park website at www.nps.gov/gumo for details and updates on park operations.

In order to share facts, not fear, DSHS continues to emphasize the importance of prevention and there are simple steps everyone can take to help prevent spreading the virus:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not available, use 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Practice social distancing by staying at least six feet away.
  • Stay at home and stop the spread of coronavirus.

The County posted notice for an Emergency Meeting due to a COVID-19 Governor’s Executive Order this morning at 9:00 a.m. The meeting will consider Governor’s Abbott’s new initiative which gives county commissioners the option to discuss and take action on measures to protect their communities on a more local level. The Governor has also given the go-ahead for local governments to pass Emergency Declarations regarding Public Health emergencies. The new urgency in policies will address Health and Safety Policy-Commercial Entities as well as mandating face coverings for business and the general public. The Van Horn City Council is expected to follow the County’s lead with a Special Meeting on Friday, June 26th at 7:00 p.m.