Link

Social

Embed

Download

Download
Download Transcript

[COVID-19: Press Q & A]

[00:00:14]

SHAUNDRA SHAW CIO FOR THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

AND I AM THE MODERATOR FOR TODAY'S MEDIA AVAILABILITY.

SPANISH INTERPRETATION IS AVAILABLE ON ATX N THREE TO START AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH DIRECTOR, STEPHANIE HAYDEN HOWARD, OR FIRST SAY A FEW WORDS FOLLOWED BY JANET PICHET, AUSTIN, PUBLIC HEALTH, CHIEF EPIDEMIOLOGIST, AND THEN CASSANDRA ON APH CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER FOR DISEASE PREVENTION AND HEALTH PROMOTION DIVISION.

WE WILL THEN OPEN IT UP TO OUR POOL REPORTER WHO WILL ASK QUESTIONS ON BEHALF OF THE MEDIA, STEPHANIE, OVER TO YOU.

GOOD MORNING, WE ARE VERY EXCITED TO SHARE WITH YOU THAT WE ARE TRANSITIONING, UM, OPERATIONS, UM, TO START OUR NEIGHBORHOOD MODEL, WE ARE REALLY LOOKING FORWARD TO THE EFFORTS OF PROVIDING VACCINES THAT ARE NEAR INDIVIDUALS IN THE NEIGHBORHOOD THAT NEED THEM THE MOST.

OUR STAFF WILL BE WORKING WITH GRASSROOTS ORGANIZATIONS ON REFERRALS, AS WELL AS ALLOWING THE ABILITY OF BEING VERY FLEXIBLE AND ALLOW, WALK UP WITHOUT AN APPOINTMENT TO THOSE LOCATIONS.

OUR STAFF, WE'RE LOOKING AT APARTMENT COMPLEXES, COMMUNITY CENTERS, AS WELL AS CONTINUING IN.

AREN'T WORKING WITH OUR FAITH BASED ORGANIZATIONS.

UM, AND SO WE WANT TO BE AS FLEXIBLE AS WE CAN BE WITH THIS CHANGE AND TRANSITION IN OUR MODEL.

OUR HOPE IS, IS THAT WE WILL BE ABLE TO GET MORE VACCINES TO THE PUBLIC.

IN ADDITION TO THAT, WE KNOW THAT BY MAKING THIS CHANGE, WE WILL BE ABLE TO REALLY, REALLY REACH OUR GOAL.

AS YOU ALL KNOW, WE HAVE ESTABLISHED A 67% OF ALL TRAVIS COUNTY RESIDENTS WILL RECEIVE, WILL BE FULLY VACCINATED.

THIS WILL ALLOW US TO MEET THAT GOAL AND EXCEED IT.

SO WE ARE LOOKING FORWARD TO MAKING THE TRANSITION AND WE DEFINITELY WILL NOT HAVE TO ACKNOWLEDGE ALL OF OUR PARTNERS THAT HAVE HELPED US THUS FAR.

UM, AND WE KNOW THAT THEY'RE GOING TO CONTINUE TO HELP US AS WE TRANSITION, UM, AND WANT TO ACKNOWLEDGE THE STAFF, UM, THAT HAVE BEEN HELPING US THUS FAR WITH THAT.

I WILL TRANSITION.

THANK YOU.

GOOD MORNING.

UH, I JUST WANTED TO SAY TO EVERYONE, I KNOW A LOT OF PEOPLE ARE EXPERIENCING COVID WITH G AGAIN, WE ALL HAVE HOPES OF RETURNING TO NORMAL, UH, IN OUR COMMUNITY, BUT WE DO NEED TO STAY STRONG AND REMAIN VIGILANT IN, UH, IMPLEMENTING THOSE PREVENTION MEASURES TO PROTECT NOT ONLY YOURSELF, BUT YOUR FAMILY AND OUR COMMUNITY AT LARGE.

AND SOME OF THAT IS TO, UH, WASH YOUR HANDS AND MASK AND SOCIAL DISTANCE, BUT IT ALSO INCLUDES MAKING SURE THAT WE ARE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO TRY TO GET VACCINATED, UH, TO PROTECT OURSELVES.

UM, YOU KNOW, AND WE SAY THAT BECAUSE WE CONTINUE TO SEE CASES, CONTINUE TO OSCULATE, THEY'RE GOING UP, THEY'RE GOING DOWN, THEY'RE GOING UP, THEY'RE GOING DOWN.

AND WE ARE SEEING INCREASES IN HOSPITALIZATIONS.

WE ARE MONITORING TRENDS OF DISEASE THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES, UH, AND THROUGHOUT TEXAS TO SEE HOW OUR PARTNER, UH, METROPOLITAN AREAS ARE FAIRING.

AND, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE FAIR WAY BETTER THAN MANY OF THEM IN PAST WAYS THAT HAVE OCCURRED.

SO, UH, I, I'M HOPING THAT OUR COMMUNITY WILL REMAIN VIGILANT IN PROTECTING EVERYONE.

WE CONTINUE TO SEE, UH, BASED ON OUR CASE INVESTIGATIONS, UH, CASES THAT CONTINUE TO OCCUR, OCCUR, UH, IN OUR COMMUNITY BECAUSE OF PEOPLE HAVING SOCIAL GATHERINGS, UH, WITH FAMILIES AND FRIENDS AND ALSO WITHIN, UH, AND CLUSTERS OF CASES THAT ARE OCCURRING IN, UH, UH, SCHOOL ATHLETICS.

SO I JUST WANT TO BE, UH, REMINDING FOLKS TO BE CAREFUL.

AND WITH THAT ALL ALTERNATE OVER TO CASSIE DELEON.

THANK YOU, JANET.

UM, AND GOOD MORNING, AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH CONTINUES TO PROVIDE, UH, VACCINES IN MULTIPLE LOCATIONS.

UM, FOUR OF THOSE TO GET THE FIRST DOSE AND ALSO THOSE FOR INDIVIDUALS TO GET THEIR SECOND DOSE.

UM, WE ARE PRIMARILY PROVIDING THEM DURING A VACCINE.

AND SO WE REALLY WANT TO ENCOURAGE THOSE OF YOU THAT HAVE GOTTEN YOUR FIRST DOSE, THAT YOU STAY VIGILANT AND

[00:05:01]

YOU ATTEMPT TO GET YOUR SECOND DOSE WITHIN THAT 20 TO 28 TO 42 DAY PERIOD, UM, AND WORK WITH, UM, AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH TO VERIFY YOUR APPOINTMENTS FOR SECOND DOSE, AND ALSO ENSURE THAT, UM, IF YOU ARE HAVING ANY DIFFICULTY, ENSURING THAT YOU HAVE THE TOOLS TO, TO NAVIGATE TO A CLINIC, UH, TO GET THAT WE ARE ALSO EXPANDING, UM, OPPORTUNITIES FOR, UH, FIRST DOSE CLINICS, UM, PARTICULARLY TO MAKE SURE THAT FOLKS WHO HAVEN'T BEEN ABLE TO GET INTO ONE OF OUR CLINICS, THAT WE MAKE MORE OPPORTUNITIES AVAILABLE AS DIRECTOR HAYDEN HOWARD TALKED ABOUT, WE ARE LOOKING AT OTHER MODELS, BUT THIS WEEK ALONE, WE EXPANDED OUR SCHEDULING TOOL.

UH, SO WE WANT TO ENCOURAGE EVERYONE TO, IF YOU HAVEN'T REGISTERED, GO AHEAD AND REGISTER, UH, GET YOUR ACCOUNT SET UP SO THAT YOU, UM, ARE ABLE TO JUST HOP ONLINE, UH, THE SCHEDULERS OPEN, UH, MOST HOURS.

AND YOU CAN SEE WHERE, UM, WHERE YOU CAN SCHEDULE AND IN CASES YOU MAY BE ABLE TO SCHEDULE THE SAME DAY OR THE DAY AFTER.

UM, ADDITIONALLY, UH, WE HAVE PILOTED A WALKUP CLINIC, UH, YESTERDAY WAS OUR FIRST, UM, WALK-UP CLINIC, BUT DID NOT REQUIRE AN APPOINTMENT.

UM, AND IT WAS A, IT WAS A GOOD SUCCESS.

WE HAD A LOT OF FOLKS COME ON OUT.

THERE WAS OVER 800 PEOPLE, IN FACT, 887 PEOPLE PARTICIPATED AND GOT THEIR FIRST DOSE THEN DID NOT HAVE AN APPOINTMENT PREVIOUSLY.

UH, WE DO STILL ENCOURAGE THOSE THAT ARE LOOKING FOR AN APPOINTMENT ARE LOOKING FOR A VACCINE TO GO AHEAD AND REGISTER ON OUR SITE, UM, GET THE APPOINTMENT, UM, BECAUSE THAT DOES STILL, UH, GET YOUR, UH, ARE LESS LIKELY TO HAVE TO WAIT IN A LINE THAT IS CAUSED BY A WALK-UP.

HOWEVER, UM, IF, IF THERE'S, THAT'S THE ONLY OPTION WE DO, WE DID GET TO TEST THAT MODEL YESTERDAY.

AND IT WAS, UM, ACTUALLY A VERY GOOD MODEL FOR MANY PEOPLE.

THOSE THAT CAME OUT, UM, IT WAS A GOOD EXPERIENCE.

AND SO WE ARE DOING THAT AGAIN TODAY, UM, AND WE ANTICIPATE THAT WE'LL BE HAVING MORE WALK-UP OFFERINGS IN THE NEXT WEEK.

UM, SO STAY VIGILANT, UH, WATCH FOR MESSAGES COMING FROM AUSTIN, PUBLIC HEALTH REGARDING THOSE, UM, SCHEDULED WALKUP CLINICS.

UM, ALSO TODAY WE KNOW THAT THERE'S SOME WEATHER TODAY, SO PLEASE, UH, WATCH THE WEATHER, UM, TO SEE IF THERE'S ANY CHANGES IN CLINIC, AS SCHEDULES ARE, ARE, UM, IMPACT, UH, CLINIC OPENINGS, UM, THAT ALL IN ALL, WE JUST WANT TO CONTINUE TO ENCOURAGE EVERYONE TO GET THEIR VACCINE, UM, AND MAKE SURE THAT IF YOU'VE HAD YOUR FIRST DOSE, THAT YOU GET YOUR SECOND DOSE WITHIN THAT, UH, TIME PERIOD.

SO YOU CAN BE FULLY VACCINATED AND YOU HAVE THAT FULL IMMUNITY WITH THAT.

I'LL OPEN THIS UP FOR QUESTIONS.

THANK YOU, CASSANDRA.

NOW WE WILL GO TO OUR POOL REPORTER, KELSEY BRADSHAW FROM THE AUSTIN AMERICAN STATESMAN, LLC.

GOOD MORNING.

UM, EXCUSE ME, OUR FIRST QUESTION THIS MORNING IS FROM THE AUSTIN AMERICAN STATESMAN.

I WAS HOPING THAT STEPHANIE COULD EXPLAIN THE NEIGHBORHOOD MODEL A LITTLE MORE.

UM, WHAT DATE WILL IT START AND HOW EXACTLY IS THAT GOING TO WORK? WHAT WE HAVE DONE THUS FAR IS, IS THAT WE HAVE, UM, PILOTED OVER THE LAST COUPLE OF MONTHS.

UM, THE WORKING IN, UH, FAITH-BASED, UM, WORKING WITH, WITH CHURCHES AND PARTNERSHIPS, UM, IN THOSE SPACES.

AND, UM, THAT HAS ALLOWED US TO REALLY KIND OF LOOK AT, UM, WHAT THE TYPE OF SETUP WOULD LOOK LIKE AND BE, AND HOW WE COULD EXPAND IT, ET CETERA.

UM, AND SO, UM, THOSE ARE WORKING VERY WELL.

AND SO, UM, AS WE TRANSITIONED INTO THE MONTH OF MAY, UM, IT WILL BE, YOU KNOW, UH, BASICALLY A HYBRID MODEL, UM, WHERE WE, YOU KNOW, MAINTAIN STILL A COUPLE OF OUR LARGE SITES.

UM, BUT WE WILL START TO, UM, WE'LL, YOU KNOW, WE'LL BE IN ALL SPACES ON, ON SATURDAYS, UM, AND LOOK AT SOME TIMES IN THE, UM, TO HAVE EXPANDED HOURS AND NEIGHBORHOOD, BUT THAT WILL START NEXT MONTH ON A MORE PERMANENT BASIS.

THE GOAL IS, IS TO, UM, TO CREATE A CALENDAR, UM, THAT WE'LL BE ABLE TO PUT ON OUR WEBSITE AND FOLKS WILL BE ABLE TO GO INTO THE WEBSITE, BUT WE WILL ALSO SHARE THAT WITH OUR TASKFORCE.

UM, AS YOU KNOW, WE CONTINUE TO WORK WITH THEM, UM, IN THE AFRICAN-AMERICAN COMMUNITY, THE HISPANIC, UM, AND THE, THE ASIAN, WE HAVE THOSE THREE TASK FORCE GROUPS THAT WE WILL SHARE THAT WITH THEM.

SO THEY HAVE THAT AWARENESS IN ADDITION TO SEEING WHAT AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH WOULD BE DOING, UH, WORKING WITH, UH, TRAVIS COUNTY.

SO WE CAN INCLUDE THEIR OPERATIONS ON THERE AS WELL, BECAUSE WE'RE IN CONVERSATIONS WITH THEM ABOUT THEM JOINING US FOR THE NEIGHBORHOOD MODEL AS WELL.

AND SO, AS I CONTINUES TO EXPAND, YOU WILL SEE MORE OF THAT AND WE WILL INCLUDE MORE OF

[00:10:01]

OUR PARTNERS.

UM, SO FOLKS WILL HAVE THAT AWARENESS.

WE'LL DO OUR COMMUNICATIONS.

UM, YOU'LL SEE THINGS ON SOCIAL MEDIA, UM, ESPECIALLY WHEN WE ARE PRESENT AT THOSE EVENTS, YOU KNOW, OUR STAFF WILL, YOU KNOW, LET FOLKS KNOW, UM, THIS IS WHERE WE ARE TODAY FROM THIS TIME TO THAT TIME, UM, START TO FINISH, YOU KNOW, AND, AND WELCOME THEM TO COME ON OUT BECAUSE WE'RE GOING TO BE VERY FLEXIBLE, UM, AND WORK WITH WALK-UPS.

OKAY.

UM, OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM COMMUNITY IMPACT.

A NEW COVID VARIANT WAS RECENTLY DETECTED AT A TEXAS A AND M LAB REPORTS SAY IT SHOWS SOME RESISTANCE TO ANTIBODIES.

ARE YOU CONCERNED THIS TEXAS VARIANT OR OTHERS THAT COULD BE RESISTANT TO VACCINES COULD BE SPREADING HERE IN OUR COMMUNITY? I'LL GO AHEAD AND START ANSWERING THAT QUESTION.

UM, YES, WE ARE AWARE OF THE BRAZOS VALLEY DURING IT THAT HAS BEEN DETECTED BY TEXAS A AND M.

UH, AND, UM, AGAIN, I DON'T KNOW ALL THE SPECIFICS ON THAT SPECIFIC VARIANT, BUT, UH, WE ALWAYS HAVE CONCERNS WHEN NEW VARIANTS ARE, UM, DETECTED IN THE COMMUNITY, BECAUSE IT'S JUST AN EXAMPLE HOW, OF HOW VIRUSES, UH, DON'T LIKE TO BE COMFORTABLE ONCE THEY LIKE TO MEET AND BEGIN TO MUTATE AND CHANGE AND TRY TO OUTSMART US.

SO WE'RE ALWAYS VERY CONCERNED WHEN WE SEE NEW VARIANTS POP UP, UH, AND, YOU KNOW, WE WILL BE WATCHING CLOSELY AND TRACKING ANY, UH, THAT MAY BE POSSIBLE BECAUSE IT IS CLOSE TO HOME.

UM, WE DO HAVE CONCERNS THAT IT COULD BE SPREADING IN OUR COMMUNITY.

AND, UH, AS I SAID, IT'S ONE OF THOSE THINGS THAT WE DO FROM AN EPIDEMIOLOGIC PERSPECTIVE IS TO, TO MONITOR TRENDS IN, UH, THOSE VIRUSES THAT ARE CIRCULATING IN OUR COMMUNITY, JUST LIKE WE DO WITH FLU.

UH, WE'RE WE'RE, YOU KNOW, WITH CORONAVIRUS, WE'RE GOING TO BE MONITORING THOSE TRENDS AND WE'LL BE GETTING MORE SPECIFIC GUIDANCE ON SURE.

FROM THE STATE ABOUT, UH, AN INFORMATION AND DETAILS ABOUT THE STATE, ABOUT HOW WE CAN BEGIN SEQUENCING, UH, FOR THOSE VARIANTS IN OUR COMMUNITY, AS WELL AS, UH, WHAT OUR RESPONSE WOULD BE.

OKAY.

UM, OUR NEXT QUESTION IS GOING TO BE FROM KVU.

HAS AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH BEEN MADE AWARE OF ANY CASES OF ADVERSE EFFECTS OF THE JOHNSON AND JOHNSON VACCINE IN CENTRAL TEXAS? UH, I'LL START AND SAY THAT, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE PRE PREDOMINANTLY BEEN ADMINISTERING THE MAGENTA AND PFIZER VACCINE IN THE AUSTIN CENTRAL TEXAS AREA.

I MEAN, UH, WE HAVE HAD AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH HAS HAD LIMITED DOSES OF JOHNSON AND JOHNSON THAT WE'VE, THAT HAVE BEEN MADE AVAILABLE TO US, BUT WE ARE NOT AWARE OF ANY ADVERSE EFFECTS ASSOCIATED WITH THE ADMINISTRATION OF THAT VACCINE ON THE CONTRARY, OR TO ANY OF THE VACCINES, UH, MEDINA OR PFIZER AS WELL, UH, THAT REQUIRED HOSPITALIZATIONS.

UM, YOU KNOW, WE, WE ARE AWARE THOUGH THAT PEOPLE ARE IN THE HOSPITAL AND BEING HOSPITALIZED FOR CORONAVIRUS.

SO, UH, I REALLY THINK THIS IS A SITUATION WHERE, UH, YOU KNOW, HAVING THE VACCINE ON BOARD IS, UH, IS LESS RISKY THAN, UM, NOT GETTING VACCINATED AT ALL.

OKAY.

OUR NEXT QUESTION IS GOING TO BE FROM CVS, AUSTIN.

WE'RE NOTICING WIDER OPPORTUNITIES TO GET THE FIRST VACCINE.

WHAT ABOUT THE SECOND? AND WHAT IF YOU MISSED YOUR APPOINTMENT FOR THE SECOND VACCINE? YEAH, I'LL RESPOND.

UM, WE DEFINITELY ALSO IN PUBLIC HEALTH, UH, PLAN EVERY WEEK TO PROVIDE SECOND DOSE CLINICS.

AND WE TRY TO ALWAYS ENSURE THAT THERE ARE ENOUGH, SECOND DOSE CLINICS AVAILABLE FOR THOSE WHO ARE HITTING THAT 28 DAY MARK, UM, THAT RECEIVED THE MATERNAL VACCINE FROM US.

WE ALSO ENCOURAGE ANYONE WHO MAY HAVE MISSED THEIR APPOINTMENT, OR THERE'S SOME CASES WHERE CLINICS MAY HAVE BEEN CANCELED THAT, UM, IF YOU'RE WITHIN THAT 28 TO 42 DAY TIME PERIOD, YOU CAN GO TO ANY ONE OF OUR CLINICS AND GET YOUR VACCINE FOR YOUR SECOND DOSE.

WE JUST WANT TO MAKE SURE YOU BRING YOUR VACCINE CARD, UM, AND, AND GO AHEAD AND GO TO ONE OF OUR CLINICS AND GET YOUR SECOND DOSE.

YOU CAN CONTACT THREE, ONE, ONE TO FIND OUT WHERE THERE'S A CLINIC AVAILABILITY AND, AND GO AHEAD AND, AND FULLY GET VACCINATED.

WE ALSO WANNA ENCOURAGE THOSE THAT ARE SEEKING THE PFIZER VACCINE, UH, TO REACH BACK OUT TO THOSE PROVIDERS THAT HAVE, UH, PROVIDED THE PFIZER VACCINE SO THAT YOU CAN GET THAT FULL PROTECTION FROM PFIZER.

AND IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT THAT YOU MAKE SURE WHICHEVER BANK SCENE YOU HAD YOUR FIRST DOSE OF IF IT WAS MADONNA, OR IF IT WAS PFIZER THAT YOU RECEIVED THAT SAME

[00:15:01]

MANUFACTURED VACCINE.

SO IT'S CRITICAL THAT YOU, UM, IF YOU HAVE MADONNA, YOU GET YOUR SECOND DOSES, MADONNA.

IF YOU HAD PFIZER, YOUR SECOND DOSE NEEDS TO BE PFIZER.

PLEASE NOTE THAT AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH DOES NOT RECEIVE THE PFIZER VACCINE.

AND SO IT'S IMPORTANT THAT YOU GO TO ANOTHER CLINIC LOCATION, UM, THAT IS, UH, THAT PROVIDES THE PFIZER VACCINE IF YOU'RE SEEKING THAT.

UM, BUT AGAIN, WE LOOK TO PROVIDE OUR SECOND DOSES.

WE LOOK AT SEE WHAT WE KNOW OF OUR CLIENT POPULATION THAT IS DUE FOR SECOND DOSE BASED ON WHAT WE PROVIDED FOR FIRST DOSE.

AND WE PLAN CLINICS ACCORDINGLY.

ADDITIONALLY, IF YOU RECEIVED A, A FIRST DOSE OF MODERNA FROM A DIFFERENT PROVIDER AND YOU'RE HAVING DIFFICULTY SCHEDULING, UM, YOU CAN ALSO COME TO ANY OF OUR ALSO PUBLIC HEALTH CLINICS AND GET YOUR SECOND DOSE.

YOU'LL JUST NEED TO BRING YOUR VACCINE CARD, UM, INDICATING THAT YOU HAD YOUR FIRST DOSE OF MADONNA.

SO IF YOU'RE HAVING ANY DIFFICULTY AT ALL, GETTING YOUR SECOND DOSE, PLEASE CONTACT THREE, ONE, ONE, AND WE CAN ASSIST YOU IN GETTING AN ALL RIGHT.

OUR NEXT QUESTION IS GOING TO BE FROM CO-OP RADIO IS A PUBLIC RELATIONS CAMPAIGN ALONE ENOUGH TO OVERCOME EXISTING, HESITANT, HESITANCY TOWARD AND RESISTANCE TO THE VACCINE.

I'LL JUMP IN, UM, A PUBLIC EDUCATION CAMPAIGN IS IMPORTANT AND IT'S IMPORTANT THAT WE REPORT THE FACTS AND WE REALLY MAKE SURE THAT EVERYONE IS WELL-INFORMED.

AND WE MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE ARE AWARE OF THE REAL RISKS, UM, OF NOT GETTING VACCINATED AND THE REAL RISKS OF, UH, THE IMPACT OF, OF THIS DISEASE.

UM, AND SO THAT'S, THAT'S A CRITICAL MOMENT IS THAT WE ALL SHARE IN THAT TO BE AMBASSADORS, TO MAKE SURE WE'RE RELAYING ACCURATE MESSAGES ABOUT THE COVID VACCINE TO HELP REDUCE THAT HESITANCY.

NOW, WE DON'T PERPETUATE A MYTH THAT WOULD HELP TO STIR UP FEARS AND INDIVIDUALS WHO ARE, WHO MAY BE HESITANT IN GETTING THE VACCINE.

SECONDLY, A PUBLIC EDUCATION CAMPAIGN IS NOT ENOUGH.

WE HAVE TO MAKE SURE THAT VACCINE IS READILY AVAILABLE SO THAT WHENEVER SOMEONE IS SEEKING VACCINE, THEY CAN IMMEDIATELY GET THAT VACCINE.

ADDITIONALLY, WE KNOW THAT WE HAVE TO DO SOME FOCUSED OUTREACH TO POPULATIONS THAT HAVE TRADITIONALLY HAD SOME HESITANCY, NOT JUST ABOUT THE COVID VACCINE, BUT ALL VACCINE.

UM, AND THERE IS SOME MISTRUST AND WE KNOW THAT THE COMMUNITY HAS SOME OF THOSE, UM, THAT ARE CONCERNED ABOUT THE VACCINE.

AND SO IT'S IMPORTANT THAT WE HAVE THOSE FOCUSED CONVERSATIONS THAT WE HAVE, UM, FOCUSED, UM, OUTREACH, UM, THAT IS TAILORED TO REALLY ADDRESS THOSE CONCERNS AND ARE MORE SPECIFIED, UH, FOR THOSE INDIVIDUALS BECAUSE EVERYONE HAS THEIR OWN UNIQUE, UM, INDIVIDUAL REASONS WHY, UH, THEY MAY HAVE QUESTIONS OR, AND CERTAINLY IMPORTANT THAT WE, UM, WORK TO TRY TO ADDRESS THOSE, UM, AND MEET PEOPLE WHERE THEY'RE AT AND TRY TO HAVE THEM ALONG THAT CONTINUUM TO, TO HELP THEM MAKE AN INFORMED DECISION.

ADDITIONALLY, UM, IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT THAT FOLKS TALK WITH THEIR, UH, PRIMARY HEALTHCARE PHYSICIAN, UM, AND THE ROLE OF THE PHYSICIAN TO INFORM THEIR PATIENTS ABOUT THE VACCINE AND ENCOURAGE THEM TO GET THE VACCINE IF THEY'RE AN APPROPRIATE CANDIDATE.

SO ALL OF THOSE FACTORS HAVE TO WORK TOGETHER TO HELP, UM, MOVE THOSE WHO MAY BE QUESTIONING OR ARE CONCERNED ABOUT, UH, GETTING THE COVID VACCINE.

UM, I AGREE WITH CASSANDRA, BUT I ALSO WOULD LIKE TO ADD IS THAT SOMETIMES WHAT WE SEE IS, IS THAT, UM, INDIVIDUALS MAY NEED TO KNOW SOMEONE, UM, THAT IS REALLY NEAR AND DEAR TO THEM HAS RECEIVED THE VACCINE AND ACTUALLY CAN, UM, YOU KNOW, BE THAT PERSON THAT MAY BE ABLE TO ENCOURAGE THEM SOMETIMES WHAT WE'VE NOTICED OVER THE YEARS, JUST, YOU KNOW, IN GENERAL, UM, WITH, WITH OTHER VACCINES IS THAT, UM, YOU, YOU SOMETIMES NEED TO HAVE THOSE ONE-ON-ONE CONVERSATIONS.

UM, YOU KNOW, WHERE YOU'RE MAYBE EVEN WORKING WITH A COMMUNITY HEALTH WORKER WHO IS A TRUSTED SOURCE IN THE COMMUNITY, UM, PEOPLE WHO HAVE ESTABLISHED AND BUILD RELATIONSHIPS WITH, UM, INDIVIDUALS IN THE COMMUNITY AND THEY ARE, UM, THEY'VE RECEIVED THEIR VACCINE AND THEY ARE, ARE TALKING TO FOLKS THAT THEY TYPICALLY WORK WITH, UM, IN THE COMMUNITY AND LET THEM KNOW THAT THEY HAVE THE VACCINE.

SOMETIMES WE ALSO NOTICED THAT IT DOESN'T HAPPEN WITHIN THE FIRST CONVERSATION.

UM, IT TAKES, YOU KNOW, TWO OR THREE TIMES FOR THEM TO HAVE THAT CONVERSATION, BUT ALL OF THOSE THINGS COMBINED WILL REALLY HELP US TO BE ABLE TO ADDRESS HESITANCY IN OUR COMMUNITY.

AND I WILL, I'LL JUST ADD THAT, YOU KNOW, YESTERDAY AT THE WALK-UP CLINIC, WE DID, UH, CASSIE AND I DID ACTUALLY PULL SEVERAL PEOPLE AND ASK WHY, WHY, YOU KNOW, WHAT MADE THEM COME OUT? WHAT WERE THEIR, DID THEY HAVE

[00:20:01]

ANY HESITANCIES AND THINGS LIKE THAT.

AND THEN WE'LL BEGIN TO DELVE MORE INTO THAT, BUT WE DID FIND THAT, UM, THERE WERE SOME PEOPLE THERE WHO, UH, WERE, YOU KNOW, THEY CHOSE THE WALK-UP OPTION BECAUSE IT WAS MORE CONVENIENT TO THEM FOR THEIR WORK SCHEDULE AND THEIR CHILDCARE SCHEDULE.

UH, IN SOME CASES IT WAS A LOVED ONE WHO SAID THEY WANTED TO GET VACCINATED BECAUSE THEY WANTED TO SEE THEIR MOTHER OR FATHER WHO WAS ILL, OR THEY WANTED TO SPEND SOME MORE TIME WITH THEM.

SO THEY WERE ENCOURAGED BY OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS TO GO AHEAD AND GET VACCINE, UM, SO THAT THEY COULD SPEND TIME TOGETHER.

SO, SO, YOU KNOW, THERE ARE A NUMBER OF REASONS WHY, AND, AND WE'LL TAKE THAT INFORMATION AND TRY TO HELP INFORM US, UH, ON HOW WE CAN IMPROVE THE WAYS WE DELIVER A VACCINE OUT INTO THE COMMUNITY.

OKAY.

WE ARE MOVING ON TO EVERYONE'S SECOND QUESTIONS.

UM, THE FIRST ONE IS FROM AUSTIN AMERICAN STATESMAN.

HOW LONG UNTIL WE GO TO STAGE TWO IN AUSTIN, PUBLIC HEALTH GUIDELINES DID THE RECENT BUMP IN HOSPITALIZATIONS PUSHED BACK THAT TIMETABLE INTO MID SUMMER OR LATER WITH WHAT THE GUIDELINES.

UM, WE TYPICALLY CONTINUE TO MONITOR THE DATA.

UM, AND, YOU KNOW, AS YOU CAN TELL, UM, IN THE WORDS OF DR.

SCOTT, THE DATA IS OSCILLATING.

AND SO AS WE CONTINUE TO MONITOR THE DATA, UM, YOU KNOW, ONCE WE GET TO A POINT WHERE THINGS CONTINUE TO STABILIZE AND IT'S NOT OSCILLATING, UM, THEN WE TYPICALLY MEET WITH OUR HEALTHCARE, UM, UH, PROVIDER TEAM AND TALK ABOUT HOW THE DATA HAS STABILIZED, HOW WE'VE NOTICED A DOWNWARD TREND.

AND THEN BASED UPON THAT, UM, WE WILL MAKE THE DECISION TO, TO MAKE A CHANGE AT THIS TIME.

THERE IS NOT A TIMELINE THAT WE HAVE DETERMINED, UM, BUT WE WILL CONTINUE TO MONITOR THAT DATA.

AND WE WILL DEFINITELY COMMUNICATE, UM, TO THE PUBLIC, UM, AS WE HAVE IN THE PAST, ONCE WE BEGAN TO TRANSITION ON TO STAGE TWO, AND I'LL JUST ADD, YOU KNOW, WE ARE WATCHING THE DATA VERY, VERY CLOSELY AND EACH DAY, YOU KNOW, WE WANT TO KNOW HOW MANY HOSPITALIZATIONS ARE THERE, HOW MANY NEW CASES AND WALL, AGAIN, THE NUMBERS, UH, FOR NEW CASES HAVE BEEN PRETTY FLAT, UM, AND MOVING SLIGHTLY UP AND DOWN.

UH, WE'RE ALSO LOOKING TO OTHER COMMUNITIES TO SEE WHAT KIND OF IMPACT THEY'RE HAVING IN THEIR CASES, BECAUSE WE DO, AS STEPHANIE SAID, WANT TO HAVE OUR COMMUNITY STABILIZED.

AND THE BEST WAY TO DO THAT IS TO CONTINUE TO STAY FOCUSED ON RETURNING TO NORMAL AND MAKING SURE THAT WE'RE, YOU KNOW, DOING THOSE PREVENTION MEASURES THAT PROTECT NOT ONLY OURSELVES, BUT OUR COMMUNITY.

UM, I WANT TO BE OUT IN THE COMMUNITY AND, AND GET THINGS BACK TO NORMAL MYSELF AND VISIT WITH FRIENDS AND FAMILY.

AND, UM, YOU KNOW, AGAIN, I, I STILL REMAIN VERY CAUTIOUS AND, UH, AND I THINK MOST OF US DO BECAUSE, YOU KNOW, WE WANT THINGS TO STABILIZE UP THERE.

UH, AND I THINK THE BEST WAY TO DO THAT IS TO AGAIN, REMAIN VIGILANT WITH THOSE PREVENTION MEASURES, INCLUDING GETTING VACCINATED.

OKAY.

OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM COMMUNITY IMPACT.

HAS AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH SEEN AN IMPROVEMENT IN VACCINE UPTAKE SINCE OPENING THE PORTAL ON A WEEK LONG BASIS? AND SINCE ALLOWING WALK UP APPOINTMENTS AT THE DELCO CENTER YESTERDAY, I I'LL JUMP IN ON THAT.

WE DEFINITELY WERE PLEASED TO SEE THAT THERE ARE, UM, THERE WAS AN INTEREST IN THE WALKUP APPOINTMENT OPTION AND SEEING, UM, YOU KNOW, AGAIN, OVER 800 PEOPLE, UM, WALK UP FOR THE APPOINTMENT.

UM, I THINK JUST TO KIND OF NOTE, WE ARE CONTINUING TO EXHAUST OUR ALLOCATION OF VACCINE.

UM, WE DID SEE THAT OUR REGISTRATION PROCESS DID SLOW DOWN SOMEWHAT.

SO WE'RE TRYING TO OPEN UP ADDITIONAL OPTIONS FOR THE PUBLIC TO ACCESS VACCINE AT DIFFERENT TIMES, UM, THROUGH THE REGISTRATION PORTAL, BUT THEN ALSO TRYING TO EXHAUST ALL OF THE DIFFERENT POTENTIAL OPTIONS THAT, UM, ARE MORE ACCOMMODATING FOR PATIENTS, UH, SO THAT THEY CAN, UH, NAVIGATE THE VACCINE, UM, CLINIC PROCESS, UM, EASILY AND, AND THAT IT MEETS THEIR LIFESTYLE AND NEEDS.

AND SO WE, UM, WE'RE PLEASED TO SEE THAT WE HAD, UH, THE LEVEL OF INTEREST YESTERDAY, UM, FOR

[00:25:01]

THE WALKUP CLINIC AND ARE INTERESTED TO SEE WHAT HAPPENS TODAY.

UH, WE DO STILL CAN CONTINUE TO SEE UPTAKE IN, UH, CLINICAL APPOINTMENTS AS WELL.

AND SO WE WILL, WE'LL CONTINUE TO MONITOR THAT.

UM, WE THINK THAT THE MAIN THING HERE IS, IS THE MASS VACCINE STRATEGY WHILE IT'S REALLY IMPORTANT TO REACH, UM, A LOT OF PEOPLE, UM, IT DOESN'T ALWAYS MEET EVERYONE'S NEEDS.

AND SO WE'VE SEEN, UM, SOME OF THE POP-UP CLINICS THAT WE'VE DONE IN PARTNERSHIP WITH THE FAITH-BASED COMMUNITY AND SOME OF OUR OTHER, UM, UH, PARTNERS REALLY BE VERY SUCCESSFUL IN ENGAGING INDIVIDUALS THAT WOULD NOT HAVE GONE TO ONE OF OUR MASS VACCINE CLINICS.

SO I THINK THERE ARE A LOT OF DIFFERENT VARIABLES THAT WE'RE WORKING WITH AS FAR AS, UH, MAKING SURE THAT PEOPLE ARE GETTING VACCINE.

AND WE REALLY ARE TRYING TO TAKE THE VACCINE WHERE PEOPLE LIVE SO THAT, UM, THERE'S NO BARRIER.

UM, AND THAT'S, THAT'S REALLY WHERE WE'RE AT NOW IS TO MAKE SURE THAT, UM, THERE'S MULTIPLE OFFERINGS, THERE'S A LOT OF OPTIONS, UM, AND THAT THERE'S NO BARRIER SO THAT, UM, WE KNOW THAT THE POPULATION THAT STILL HASN'T BEEN VACCINATED HAS A LOT OF OPTIONS TO CHOOSE FROM.

OUR NEXT QUESTION IS FROM KVU, IS THAT THE DEMAND FOR VACCINES STARTING TO SLOW DOWN? SO I THINK I'M JUST GOING TO KIND OF REITERATE, UM, SORT OF MY RESPONSE THAT I JUST PROVIDED THE VACCINE, UH, DEMAND IS, UM, EVOLVING.

UM, WE DEFINITELY SEE THAT THE DIFFERENT SETTINGS ARE IMPORTANT.

UM, AND WE ARE ENCOURAGED BECAUSE EVERY TIME WE DO A SMALL COMMUNITY-BASED TYPE OF CLINIC, WE SEE THOSE CLINICS FILL UP.

UM, AND SO WE, WE DEFINITELY, IT'S HARD TO SAY THAT THE VACCINE DEMAND IS, IS, UM, IS, UH, DWINDLING WHEN WE KNOW THAT THERE'S STILL A LOT OF PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY THAT NEED VACCINE.

UH, WE HAVE NOT GOTTEN CLOSE TO THAT 67% VACCINATION MARK.

WE HAVE ZIP CODES THAT ARE STILL LAGGING BEHIND IN, UM, REACHING EVEN 40 AND 50% OF VACCINE.

SO WE REALLY KNOW THAT WE'VE GOT TO CONTINUE TO FOCUS, UM, VACCINE EFFORTS TO MAKE SURE THAT EVERYONE HAS ACCESS.

UM, AND THAT THOSE THAT HAVE HAD ANY ISSUE WITH TRYING TO ACCESS VACCINE, THAT WE, WE TAKE IT TO THEM AND, AND PROVIDE THAT OPPORTUNITY.

UM, WE'RE VERY ENCOURAGED AGAIN, BY THE WALKUP CLINIC THAT WE HAD YESTERDAY.

UM, IT WAS VERY REVEALING IN HAVING FEEDBACK, UM, DIRECTLY FROM THE POP POPULATION THAT CAME OUT ABOUT WHY THEY ARE CHOOSING THIS OPTION.

UM, AND DEFINITELY IT SPEAKS TO, UM, THE CONVENIENCE OF HAVING THAT AVAILABILITY ON THE DAY THAT THEY WAKE UP AND THEY DECIDE THEY WANT TO GET VACCINATED.

THEY CAN JUST GO TO ANY LOCATION AND GET THAT.

SO THAT'S, THAT'S REALLY IMPORTANT, UH, THAT, UH, WE HAVE THAT FLEXIBILITY AND THAT, UM, FOLKS ARE SUPPORTED IN THAT WAY SO THAT THEY CAN MOVE ON WITH THEIR DAILY LIVES AND NOT HAVE TO PLAN AROUND VACCINE.

THEY JUST CAN GO GET IT AND, UM, AND, AND GET THE VACCINE.

SO W W AND AGAIN, WE CONTINUE TO EXHAUST OUR, UH, WEEKLY, UM, ALLOCATION.

AND SO AT THIS POINT, IT'S DIFFICULT TO SAY WHETHER OR NOT WE HAVE DEMAND DWINDLING BECAUSE WE CONTINUE TO HAVE, UM, OUTLETS TO BE ABLE TO UTILIZE OUR VACCINE.

AND I'LL ALSO REEMPHASIZE WHAT CASSIE SAID THAT, YOU KNOW, JUST BASED ON THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO WALKED UP YESTERDAY, IT, IT, THAT OPTION WAS, UH, OBVIOUSLY VERY ATTRACTIVE TO, UH, INDIVIDUALS WHO WANTED TO GET VACCINE, BUT WERE MAYBE HAVING CHALLENGES WITH, UH, OUR ONLINE SYSTEM OR THAT WHERE THE DIGITAL DIVIDE MIGHT BE AN IMPACT, UM, OR WORK SCHEDULES MIGHT BE AN IMPACT.

UM, YOU KNOW, WE DID HAVE A, AGAIN, WE DID A CHAT WITH A FEW PEOPLE, AND I DO FEEL LIKE, UM, YOU KNOW, THERE ARE OPTIONS THAT, UM, THAT CAN HELP EXPEDITE THE PROCESS.

SHOULD THEY, UH, THEY WENT TO A MASS VACCINE CLINIC.

UM, IT'S ALWAYS GOING TO BE HELPFUL, AND THIS IS JUST A REMINDER TO BE REGISTERED INTO OUR ONLINE SYSTEM.

IT WILL HELP SPEED THE PROCESS UP ONCE YOU GET THERE.

AND IF YOU, ESPECIALLY, IF YOU'RE WALKING UP THE FAST PASSES, YOU REGISTER, AND YOU HAVE AN APPOINTMENT, UH, THAT WILL GET YOU IN A LOT FASTER, HOWEVER, IF YOU WERE STANDING IN LINE AND HAVING TO WAIT, UH, UH, AND DON'T HAVE AN APPOINTMENT, IT'S A PERFECT OPPORTUNITY TO MAKE SURE THAT YOU ARE, UH, REGISTERING ONLINE INTO OUR SYSTEM, UH, THAT WAY, WHEN YOU GET TO, UH, THE APPOINTMENT QUEUE, THEY CAN MAKE SURE.

OR WHEN DO YOU GET, WHEN YOU ENTER THE CLINIC ITSELF FROM, FROM THE LINE, UH, THEY CAN PROCESS YOU VERY QUICKLY AND THAT PROCESS WILL BE SPED UP.

SO I DO ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO CONTINUE TO GO ONLINE AND REGISTER SO THAT YOU'RE PREPARED, UH, TO GET VACCINATED.

SHOULD YOU WALK UP?

[00:30:07]

OKAY.

OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM CBS, AUSTIN.

WE'RE SEEING NORTHERN STATES AND CANADA FLARING UP RIGHT NOW WITH COVID-19.

IS THAT SOMETHING WE SHOULD BE WORRIED ABOUT SINCE LAST YEAR, COVID FIRST FLARED UP IN THE NORTHEAST BEFORE MAKING ITS WAY HERE? UM, YEAH, SO SOMETHING WE SHOULD BE WORRIED ABOUT AND CONCERNED ABOUT IT'S, IT'S ONE OF THOSE THINGS EPIDEMIOLOGISTS DO ARE LOOK AT TRENDS OF DISEASE THROUGHOUT THE WORLD AND THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES, AND EVEN THROUGHOUT TEXAS.

UM, YOU KNOW, AGAIN, THIS TIME, LAST YEAR, THERE WERE SPIKES IN NEW JERSEY IN NEW YORK CITY.

UH, AND WE WERE MONITORING THAT VERY CLOSELY BECAUSE, UH, IT'S, IT'S LIKE WATCHING THE THUNDER STORM COMING YOUR WAY, UH, YOU KNOW, YOU KNOW, IT'S ON ITS WAY, BUT YOU, YOU HOPE IT DOESN'T HAVE A BIG IMPACT WHEN IT GETS HERE.

AND SO, UM, YOU KNOW, WE CONTINUE TO MONITOR WHAT THOSE TRENDS ARE, UH, AGAIN, THROUGHOUT THE COMMUNITY, THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES.

AND SPECIFICALLY IN TEXAS, WE MEET, UH, REGULARLY AND ROUTINELY, UH, WEEKLY WITH, UH, OTHER EPIDEMIOLOGISTS THROUGHOUT THE STATE OF TEXAS, JUST TO COMPARE NOTES, TO SEE WHAT'S GOING ON.

ARE THEY SEEING INCREASES IN THAT TYPE OF THING? WHAT KIND OF VARIANTS ARE THEY SEEING IN THEIR, IN THEIR COMMUNITIES? AND WHILE WE IN AUSTIN HAVE FARED MUCH BETTER THAN SOME OTHER METROPOLITAN AREAS, UM, WE CONTINUE TO MONITOR THAT AND, AND THAT'S KIND OF HOW WE BUILD OUR MESSAGES EACH WEEK TO MAKE SURE WE REMIND FOLKS TO MAKE, MAKE SURE THEY'RE THEY'RE MASKING AND DISTANCING AND PROTECTING THEMSELVES.

SO, UH, AGAIN, WE DO MONITOR THOSE TRENDS.

WE'RE CONCERNED ABOUT THOSE TRENDS AND, UH, YOU KNOW, WE JUST HOPE THAT WE DON'T SEE A REPEAT OF LAST SPRING OR FALL.

OUR NEXT QUESTION COMES FROM CO-OP RADIO.

THE JOURNAL NATURE REPORTS THAT INDIVIDUALS WHO CONTRACTED COVID-19, BUT WERE NOT HOSPITALIZED NOR OTHERWISE TREATED ARE NOW EXPERIENCING MEDICAL PROBLEMS. HAVE YOU SEEN THIS IN THE AUSTIN TRAVIS COUNTY AREA? AND IS THIS A POTENTIAL COMMUNITY MEDICAL EMERGENCY? UM, WE HAVE HEARD SOME ANECDOTAL INFORMATION, PEOPLE WHO, UM, HAVE HAD MILD SYMPTOMOLOGY, BUT WHO HAVE HAD SOME ONGOING LINGERING EFFECTS, UH, RELATED TO THINGS SUCH AS BRAIN FOG IS WHAT THEY TYPICALLY CALL IT, OR, YOU KNOW, ONGOING EXHAUSTION.

UH, SO WE HAVE HEARD SOME, UH, INFORMATION ABOUT THAT.

UM, BUT, AND WE ARE CURRENTLY WORKING WITH THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS WHO, UM, UH, WE'RE TRYING TO HELP THEM RECRUIT, UH, UH, CASES THAT MAY BE, UH, THAT WERE CASES WHO TO KIND OF FOLLOW THEM UP TO SEE IF THEY HAVE ANY KIND OF LONG-TERM NEUROLOGICAL IMPACTS OR, YOU KNOW, OTHER ISSUES THAT THEY'VE IDENTIFIED.

SO THAT'S SOMETHING THAT THE UNIVERSITY OF TEXAS, UM, DELL MEDICAL SCHOOL IS ACTUALLY WORKING ON WITH US, UM, YOU KNOW, TO, TO LOOK INTO THAT INVESTIGATION.

BUT MOST OF OUR INFORMATION'S BEEN ANECDOTAL AT, AT, AT THE CURRENT TIME.

ALL RIGHT.

AND THEN THIS IS OUR LAST QUESTION, UM, FROM KX AND THERE ARE MANY LARGE EVENTS SCHEDULED THIS WEEKEND IN THE AUSTIN AREA.

IS THERE ANY CONCERN THAT THERE WILL BE A SPIKE IN CASES OVER THE NEXT FEW WEEKS? AGAIN, ANYTIME THERE'S A LARGE GATHERINGS OF ANY SORT, UH, YOU KNOW, THERE IS A POTENTIAL THAT SOMEBODY COULD SPREAD DISEASE IN THAT, ESPECIALLY IF THEY'RE NOT BEING VIGILANT ABOUT, UH, MASKING SOCIAL DISTANCING, THEIR HAND HYGIENE, AND, UM, AND GOING OUT IF THEY'RE SICK, WE ARE SEEING PEOPLE CASE AFTER CASE MORE RECENTLY WHERE PEOPLE THINK THEY ARE JUST ARE SUFFERING FROM MILD ALLERGIES.

AND IN REALITY, WHAT'S WHAT THEY, YOU KNOW, THEY GO ON TO GET TESTED AND THEY HAVE COVID 19.

SO IF YOU HAVE SYMPTOMOLOGY, THAT'S, UH, A COVID LIKE SYMPTOM, YOU NEED TO MAKE SURE YOU'RE STAYING AT HOME AND ISOLATING YOURSELF FROM, UH, INDIVIDUALS WHO MAY NOT HAVE THAT YOU MAY POTENTIALLY EXPOSE.

SO AGAIN, ANYTIME THERE'S LARGE GATHERINGS, UH, WE ALWAYS WANT PEOPLE TO BE SUPER VIGILANT ABOUT PROTECTIVE MEASURES THAT WILL PROTECT THEM,

[00:35:01]

THEM FROM CONTRACTING ILLNESS, AND THEN BRINGING IT HOME TO THEIR FAMILY.

UM, BUT YOU KNOW, AGAIN, IF YOU DO CHOOSE TO PARTICIPATE IN ACTIVITIES, UH, SUCH AS THIS, YOU NEED TO MAKE SURE THAT YOU ARE DOING, YOU KNOW, FOLLOWING THOSE, UH, NON-PHARMACEUTICAL INVENTION INTERVENTIONS THAT WE'VE ALWAYS TALKED ABOUT TO PROTECT YOURSELF.

THANK YOU, JANET.

AT THIS TIME, WE WILL NOW GO INTO OUR CLOSING REMARKS, STEPHANIE, OVER TO YOU.

THANK YOU.

UM, AS WE CLOSE, AS I STATED AT THE BEGINNING, UM, AS WE SHIFT TO OUR NEIGHBORHOOD MODEL, UM, AND REALLY LOOK HOW TO REALLY MEET PEOPLE WHERE THEY ARE IN SPECIFIC AREAS, LOCATIONS, ZIP CODES, UM, AND DIFFERENT SETTINGS.

SO WHETHER WE'RE AT A FAITH-BASED ORGANIZATION, A COMMUNITY CENTER, UM, AN APARTMENT COMPLEX, UM, YOU KNOW, WORKING WITH THEM, UM, EITHER, YOU KNOW, WITH THE FACILITIES THAT THEY HAVE, OR EVEN USING SOME OF OUR, YOU KNOW, MOBILE VANS THAT WE HAVE AS WE TRANSITION, THAT IS ONE OF THE THINGS NOW THAT WE'RE GOING TO TRANSITION OUR, OUR MEDIA.

SO AS OF TODAY, WE ARE GOING TO TRANSITION OUR MEDIA AND WE WILL BE COMING IN TO YOU EVERY OTHER FRIDAY.

UM, WE WILL RETURN BACK ON MAY 7TH AND, UM, BE ABLE TO CONTINUE WITH THE PROCESS.

IN THE MEANTIME, OUR GOAL IS, IS THAT IF INTERVIEWERS, UM, YOU KNOW, HAVE QUESTIONS, CONCERNS, UM, YOU KNOW, WE'LL GO WITH A ONE, UH, ONE TYPE FORMAT.

UM, WORKING WITH OUR COMMUNICATIONS TEAM, OUR COMMUNICATIONS TEAM WILL CONTINUE TO, UH, SEND WRITTEN STATEMENTS, UM, AS THEY HAVE DONE, BUT THAT TEAM IS GOING TO ALSO BE ABLE TO SHIFT SOME OF THEIR OPERATIONS.

WELL, I GO LIVES IS THAT, YOU KNOW, WE'VE DONE, UM, ALMOST 60 OF THESE.

AND SO OUR GOAL IS, IS REALLY TO START TO START TO TRANSITION BACK TO A MODEL OF ONE OH ONE, UM, GIVING THAT INFORMATION DIRECTLY, UH, TO A REPORTER OR A, UM, A JOURNALIST JOURNALISM PERSON.

AND SO, UM, ONE I'D LIKE TO TAKE THIS TIME, I'M OUT TO THANK THE COMMUNICATIONS TEAM, UM, INTERNAL TO APH, UM, ALL WHO HAVE PARTICIPATED AS A PART OF THE, UM, OUR JOINT, UM, INFORMATION COMMUNICATIONS TEAM.

UM, AND I'D LIKE TO THANK ALL OF THE REPORTERS THAT HAVE TAKEN TIME OUT OF THEIR BUSY DAY, UH, TO FACILITATE FOR US AND ALL THE PEOPLE THAT ARE WORKING BEHIND THE SCENES, UM, WITH THE CITY OF AUSTIN, THIS HAS BEEN A REALLY, UM, GREAT WAY FOR US TO BE ABLE TO GET INFORMATION OUT TO THE PUBLIC.

AND WE VERY MUCH APPRECIATE EVERYBODY THAT'S COMING IN.

UM, I'D ALSO LIKE TO, UM, YOU KNOW, TANK THANK STAFF, UM, BECAUSE YOU KNOW, ALL OF US ARE, ARE COMING IN, UM, AND BEING HERE PROVIDING, UM, INFORMATION, BEING ABLE TO THAT INFORMATION OUT AS QUICKLY, UH, YOU KNOW, AS POSSIBLE, UH, DR.

SCOTT, UH, CASSANDRA DAILY ON, UH, JANET PICHETTE, UM, AND OTHER PHYSICIANS THAT HAVE HELPED US ALONG THE WAY IN ADRIAN STIRRUP.

SO WE WE'VE HAD OTHER FOLKS ALONG THE WAY TO HELP US OUT.

AND, UM, AS WE CONTINUE TO KIND OF SHIFT TO A OTHER FORMAT, UM, WE JUST HAVE TO ACKNOWLEDGE ALL OF OUR PARTNERS THAT HAVE MADE IT POSSIBLE FOR US TO DO THIS.

SO WITH THAT, I WILL TRANSITION OVER TO JANET DISSENT.

HI.

SO, UM, AGAIN, UH, AS STEPHANIE MENTIONED, UH, AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH HAS BEEN HARD AT WORK WORKING ON THIS COVID RESPONSE SINCE JANUARY OF 2020, UH, EPIDEMIOLOGIST STAFF HAD BEEN, YOU KNOW, LOOKING BACK, YOU KNOW, MONITORING INDIVIDUALS WHO, UH, WERE RETURNING FROM MAINLAND CHINA AND LOU, LOU HAD CITI, UH, ITALY AND, AND DIFFERENT COUNTRIES, UH, MONITORING THEM, UH, WAY BACK THEN.

THAT WAS OUR INITIAL BEGINNING OF THIS.

SO WE HAVE ALL PEOPLE UNDERSTAND WHAT COVID FATIGUE IS.

AND WE, WE, WE UNDERSTAND THAT IT IS A REAL THING THAT PEOPLE ARE EXPERIENCING OUT IN THE COMMUNITY.

AND I JUST

[00:40:01]

WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT PEOPLE, UH, UNDERSTAND TO REMAIN VIGILANT AND STAY STRONG AND STAY FOCUSED SO THAT WE CAN RETURN BACK TO NORMAL.

AND THAT INCLUDES, UH, CONTINUING TO USE THOSE PREVENTION MEASURES OF MASKING DISTANCING, WASHING YOUR HANDS, STAYING HOME, IF YOU'RE SICK AND ABOVE ALL TO GET VACCINATED, UH, TO, TO, YOU KNOW, GIVE YOU THAT ADDED PROTECTION, UH, SO THAT WE CAN REACH HERD IMMUNITY AND RETURNED TO NORMAL.

WE CONTINUE TO SEE CASES OSCILLATING, AS FAR AS NEW CASES GO, WE'RE SEEING SLIGHT INCREASES IN HOSPITALIZATIONS, AND WE WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE, WE SQUASHED THAT WE'RE, WE'RE BACK AT THE FLATTEN, THE CURVE STAGE, WHERE WE WANT TO MAKE SURE, UH, WE REMAIN AT A FLAT LEVEL AND NOT EXPERIENCE THOSE SPIKES IN CASES THAT WE SAW IN NOVEMBER, YOU KNOW, CASES OF 600 OR 700.

WE JUST DON'T WANT TO BE THERE.

AND SO WE WILL BE MONITORING TRENDS OUT IN THE COMMUNITY, UH, TO MAKE SURE THAT, UH, THAT, YOU KNOW, SHOULD WE SEE SPIKES OR, UH, ANY KIND OF ISSUES WE'LL ALERT THEM, UH, PUBLIC, UH, WHEN WE, WE KNOW OF THOSE INFORMATION, UM, BUT, UH, JUST WANT EVERYONE TO STAY STRONG AND, UM, KEEP THE FAITH.

AND IN CLOSING, I WANT TO GIVE A HUGE SHOUT OUT TO ALL THE PARTNERS AND, UH, ALL OF THOSE ARE CONTRIBUTING TO THIS MASS VACCINE STRATEGY THAT WE'VE BEEN WORKING THROUGH.

IT IS, UM, A LARGE, UH, TASK TO STAND UP ENOUGH VACCINE LOCATIONS, UM, PROVIDE ENOUGH VACCINATORS, UM, ENOUGH VOLUNTEERS, ALL THE WORK IT TAKES TO PUT A VACCINE CLINIC ON, UM, AND DOING MULTIPLE VACCINE LOCATIONS, UM, AND BEING OUT THERE TO SUPPORT, UM, OUR COMMUNITY.

UM, THERE HAVE BEEN, UM, RETIRED, UH, PHYSICIANS AND NURSES THAT HAVE COME OUT, UH, THROUGH, UH, TRAVIS COUNTY MEDICAL SOCIETY AND OTHER OUTLETS TO JUST HELP SUPPORT THIS EFFORT.

AND, AND IT'S A TIRELESS EFFORT.

THEY JUST HAVE WORKED AND WORKED AND WORKED, UM, AND JUST TO SEE EVERYONE SO COMMITTED AND SO, UM, WILLING TO REALLY TACKLE THIS VIRUS AND TRY TO GET OUR COMMUNITY PROTECTED.

UM, AND IT IS A HEARTFELT THANK YOU THAT ALSO PUBLIC HEALTH SHARES WITH ALL OF THE PARTNERS THAT ARE IN THIS, UM, AND ALL OF THOSE THAT HAVE TAKEN THIS ON AND MADE IT ALMOST A PERSONAL MISSION TO WORK, TO TRY TO GET US, UM, ALL VACCINATED.

SO WE JUST APPRECIATE SO MUCH EVERYONE WORKING TO, UM, TO HELP PROVIDE THIS PROVISION OF PROTECTION WITH THAT.

AND WE KNOW THAT THERE'S A LOT OF VACCINE OPTIONS AVAILABLE IN OUR COMMUNITY.

SO WE WANT TO ENCOURAGE EVERYONE TO SEEK OUT VACCINE, WHATEVER FITS YOUR SCHEDULE, WHATEVER FITS, WHAT WORKS FOR YOU.

UM, PLEASE KNOW THAT VACCINE IS FREE.

UH, YOU SHOULD NOT HAVE TO PAY ANYTHING TO GET VACCINE.

UM, IF YOU SEEK VACCINE FROM AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH, YOU WILL NOT BE REQUIRED TO SHOW ANY TYPE OF ID.

UM, THE ONLY THING WE ASK THAT WHEN YOU COME BACK FOR YOUR SECOND DOSE, NEW BRAIN, YOUR VACCINE CARD, OTHER THAN THAT, THAT'S THE ONLY THING THAT YOU WOULD HAVE TO DEMONSTRATE FOR US TO GET YOUR VACCINE.

THERE'S NO NEED TO WORRY ABOUT HAVING TO PAY.

UM, IT IS SOMETHING THAT, UM, YOU ALL, EVERYONE SHOULD HAVE ACCESS TO, AND THERE SHOULD BE NO BARRIER TO GETTING IT.

SO AGAIN, BE THAT PERSON THAT GETS THAT VACCINE AND ALSO ENCOURAGE YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY AND LOVED ONES TO ALSO GET THE VACCINE SO THAT WE CAN, UM, HAVE THOSE FAMILY GATHERINGS.

YOU CAN TRAVEL WITHOUT HAVING ANY CONCERNS.

YOU CAN SEND YOUR CHILD TO SCHOOL WITHOUT HAVING CONCERNS ABOUT, UM, THEM COMING BACK AND, UM, NOT HAVING THE PROTECTIONS IN PLACE THAT YOU NEED TO, TO FIGHT OFF THIS, THIS DISEASE.

SO BE VIGILANT STILL, BUT ALSO GET THAT VACCINE SO WE CAN WORK TO TRY TO GET BACK TO, TO NORMAL.

UH, THANK YOU SO MUCH AND, UM, ENJOY YOUR WEEKEND.

THANK YOU.

THAT CONCLUDES OUR MEDIA AVAILABILITY TODAY.

THANK YOU FOR OUR WONDERFUL FEMALE PANELIST GROUP TODAY.

THANK YOU.

TAPE PH DIRECTOR, STEPHANIE HAYDEN, HOWARD, CHIEF EPIDEMIOLOGIST, JANET SCHUTT, CASSANDRA DAILYOM APH CHIEF ADMINISTRATIVE OFFICER FOR DISEASE PREVENTION, HEALTH PROMOTION DIVISION, AND TO OUR POOL REPORTER KELSEY BRADSHAW FROM THE AUSTIN AMERICAN STATESMAN.

THANK YOU FOR JOINING US.

EVERYONE HAVE A SAFE AND TRY TO BE AS RAIN FREE AS POSSIBLE WEEKEND.

THANK YOU.

IT MADE ME STRONG.

I WAS DREAMING OF THE LOVERS TO .

* This transcript was compiled from uncorrected Speech-to-Text.