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[00:00:07]

GOOD MORNING.

I'M LASHONDRA SHAW PIO FOR THE CITY OF AUSTIN.

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

SPANISH INTERPRETATION IS AVAILABLE ON ATX IN THREE TO START DR.

DEZ MAR WALKS AUSTIN, TRAVIS COUNTY HEALTH AUTHORITY WILL FIRST SAY A FEW WORDS FOLLOWED BY INTERIM AUSTIN, PUBLIC HEALTH DIRECTOR, ADRIAN STIRRUP, THEN CITY OF AUSTIN, MAYOR STEVE ADLER FOLLOWED BY TRAVIS COUNTY.

JUDGE ANDY BROWN.

WE WILL THEN OPEN IT UP TO OUR POOL.

REPORTER WILL ASK QUESTIONS ON BEHALF OF THE MEDIA, DR.

WALKS OVER TO YOU.

GOOD MORNING, EVERYONE.

WE ARE HERE THIS MORNING TO ANNOUNCE THAT AUSTIN TRAVIS COUNTY WILL BE RETURNING TO STAGE THREE OF OUR COVID 19 RISK FACE GUIDELINES.

THIS IS DUE IN PART TO THE CONFIRMED PRESENCE OF THE DELTA VARIANT IN OUR COMMUNITY AND THE ASSOCIATED DRAMATIC INCREASE IN NEW CASES AND HOSPITALIZATIONS THAT WE'VE SEEN IN THE PAST FEW DAYS.

I'D LIKE TO TAKE A MOMENT TO THANK ALL OF THE MEDICAL PERSONNEL IN OUR HOSPITALS, EMS FIRST RESPONDERS, PHYSICIANS, NURSES, ALL OVER TRAVIS COUNTY WHO HAVE WORKED SO DILIGENTLY TO CARE FOR COVID-19 PATIENTS.

I KNOW THAT YOU ARE WEARY FROM THE STRUGGLE AND WE ARE TAKING THIS MOMENT TO RE DIRECT OUR ATTENTION TO WHAT WE KNOW HAS WORKED IN THE PAST.

WE HAVE HAD TWO, UM, SPIKES IN CASES, ONE IN LAST JULY AND ONE IN JANUARY.

AND THIS COMMUNITY HAS WORKED TOGETHER TO REDUCE THOSE CASE NUMBERS.

BY DOING THE THINGS THAT WE KNOW WORK, WE WORN MASK, WASHED HER HANDS, SOCIAL DISTANCE AND STAYED HOME WHEN WE WERE SICK AND THIS MUST BE REVIEWED AND REVIVED SO THAT WE CAN GET TO THE NEXT STAGE.

WE WANT TO REOPEN SCHOOL SAFELY AND WE WANT TO CONTINUE TO REOPEN OUR ECONOMY.

AND THOSE THINGS CAN HAPPEN IF WE WORK TOGETHER TO DO SO BY ENCOURAGING OUR FRIENDS AND LOVED ONES TO BE VACCINATED AND TO CONTINUE THOSE THINGS THAT I JUST MENTIONED AT THE PRESENT TIME, OUR ICU BED CAPACITY IS STRAINED AND LARGELY THIS IS DUE TO THE FACT THAT WE HAVE A SHORTAGE OF STAFF, AND WE ALSO HAVE MORE RESPIRATORY ILLNESS AS WE'VE RELAXED OUR MASKING POLICY.

AND AS THERE'S BEEN MORE TRAVEL AND SOCIAL INTERACTION, THIS DELTA VARIANT THAT WE HAVE NOW IN OUR MEDS, AS YOU'VE HEARD IS MUCH MORE INFECTIOUS.

IT SPREADS MORE RAPIDLY IN OUR COMMUNITY, BUT VACCINES ARE EFFECTIVE AT PROTECTING US FROM BECOMING ILL, SEVERELY ILL AND NEEDING HOSPITALIZATION.

AND IT ALSO PROTECTS PEOPLE FROM DYING.

WE'VE SEEN IN THE LAST FEW DAYS THAT THE INCREASES IN OUR ADMISSIONS HAS GONE FROM SEVEN ON A SEVEN DAY MOVING AVERAGE TO 20 TO 21.

I WAS A SEVEN DAY MOVING AVERAGE.

AND OUR SEVEN DAY AVERAGE FOR NEW CASES HAS TRIPLED FROM 30 TO ALMOST 90.

THIS HAS TO STOP AND WE KNOW HOW TO MAKE THAT HAPPEN.

WE ARE NOW SEEING MORE PEDIATRIC CASES OF COVID-19 AND WE NOW ARE ABLE TO VACCINATE CHILDREN 12 AND OLDER.

SO I URGE EVERYONE TO GET THEIR CHILDREN VACCINATED BEFORE SCHOOL BEGINS SO THAT THEY CAN GO BACK SAFELY AND RETURN TO IN-PERSON LEARNING.

WHAT DOES STAGE THREE MEAN? ALL OF THE SAME GUIDANCE IS IN PLACE FOR STAGE THREE, EXCEPT THAT WE ASK THAT THOSE WHO ARE HIGH RISK WHO HAVE CHRONIC DISEASE OR IMMUNE COMPROMISED STATUS WEAR A MASK.

IF THEY ARE IN A SITUATION THAT IS, UH, GOING TO PUT THEM AT RISK.

SO THEY SHOULD AVOID BEING INDOORS IN POORLY VENTILATED SPACES.

THEY SHOULD

[00:05:01]

ONLY ENGAGE IN ESSENTIAL TRAVEL.

AND IF THEY HAVE TO TRAVEL, WEAR A MASK AND THEY SHOULD AVOID GOING TO PLACES WITH CROWDS AND IF THEY HAVE TO DO SO WEAR A MASK, WE ARE HOPING THAT THIS SELF CORRECTION THAT WE'RE DOING WITH THE CHANGE TO THE STAGE THREE'S DATA'S WILL HELP BRING US BACK TO A PLACE WHERE CASES ARE AGAIN, DECLINING.

WE ARE IN THE PROCESS OF MAKING A REQUEST TO THE STATE FOR HELP WITH ADDITIONAL STAFFING AND TO REOPEN INFUSION CENTERS FOR MONOCLONAL ANTIBODY THERAPY.

WE ARE IN CONSTANT CONVERSATION WITH ALL OF THE STAKEHOLDERS, HOSPITAL GROUPS, PHYSICIAN GROUPS, SCHOOLS, ET CETERA, TO EVALUATE THE SITUATION WE WILL CONTINUE TO ADVISE AS THE SITUATION DICTATES.

I THANK YOU FOR YOUR ATTENTION AND I THANK YOU FOR DOING WHAT NEEDS TO BE DONE TO GET US THROUGH THIS PHASE.

THANK YOU.

THANK YOU, DR.

WACHS.

UM, AS I THINK ABOUT OUR CONVERSATION TODAY, I'M REMINDED, REMINDED OF SOMETHING.

MY MOTHER ALWAYS USED TO TELL ME IF YOU HEAR SOMETHING THREE TIMES, IT MAY BE TRUE AND THIS MORNING A MESSAGE THAT I'M SURE YOU WILL HEAR REPEATED BY MYSELF.

AND MY COLLEAGUES IS THE IMPORTANCE OF VACCINATION.

YES, WE MAY BE MOVING BACK TO A STAGE THAT WE HOPE WAS IN OUR DISTANT PAST, BUT WHAT'S DIFFERENT.

THIS TIME IS THE INFORMATION THAT WE HAVE AND THE PROOF THAT WE HAVE IN THE EFFICACY OF VACCINES.

AND SO MY COMMENTS TO YOU THIS MORNING ARE, UM, AND IT'S RATHER CATCHY VACCINES.

CAN'T MUTATE IF THEY CAN'T REPLICATE.

AND HOW DO WE PREVENT THAT? YOU PREVENT THAT BY GETTING VACCINATED.

WE KNOW THAT THE VACCINE IS HIGHLY EFFECTIVE AGAINST PREVENTING DEATH AND SEVERE ILLNESS.

EVEN WITH THE DELTA VARIANT, AS DR.

WACHS SAID, OUR KIDDOS ARE GEARED UP AND READY TO GO BACK TO IN-PERSON LEARNING.

AND WE KNOW THAT IS SO IMPORTANT FOR THEIR WELLBEING AND THEIR CONTINUED PROGRESS, AND THE WAY THAT WE CAN SUPPORT OUR KIDS IN DOING THAT SAFELY IS MAKING SURE THAT THEY ARE VACCINATED.

PFIZER IS THE CURRENTLY THE ONLY VACCINE APPROVED FOR AGES 12 AND UP.

AND YOU CAN GET THAT VACCINE AT ANY AUSTIN OR TRAVIS COUNTY VACCINATION LOCATION.

WE'RE IN DEL VALLEY, WE'RE AT THE EXPO CENTER.

WE'RE AT SUPERMARKETS, WE'LL COME TO YOUR HOUSE, WE'LL GO YOUR LOCAL BUSINESS, WHATEVER YOU NEED US TO DO TO HELP YOU MAKE THIS CHOICE TO BE VACCINATED.

WE ARE PREPARED.

THANK YOU.

I'LL TURN IT OVER TO MARY HANDLER.

THANK YOU, DIRECTOR, UH, STIR UP IN DR.

WACHS.

UM, YOU KNOW, THIS IS A KIND OF GUT CHECK TIME, UH, FOR, FOR, FOR OUR COMMUNITY.

UH, I HATE THAT WE ARE HERE TOGETHER AGAIN, UH, AT A PRESS CONFERENCE TALKING ABOUT THE, THE, THE VIRUS, UH, I HAD THOUGHT AND HAD HOPED, UH, THAT, UH, WE WOULD NOT BE IN FRONT OF YOU AGAIN, TALKING ABOUT A RISE IN COVID CASES, WE'RE HERE BECAUSE WE'RE CONCERNED ABOUT EACH INDIVIDUAL PERSON THAT LIVES IN OUR COMMUNITY, UH, ESPECIALLY THOSE THAT ARE IN MOST IN DANGER RIGHT NOW.

UH, THOSE AMONG US THAT HAVE NOT YET, UH, BEEN BEEN VACCINATED.

WE'RE ALSO HERE BECAUSE WE SEE A GROWING THREAT TO THE COMMUNITY AS A WHOLE.

THAT'S, THAT'S EVERYBODY, BOTH THOSE THAT ARE VACCINATED.

AND THOSE THAT ARE, THAT ARE NOT FIRST, LET ME SPEAK TO THOSE THAT HAVE YET TO GET VACCINATED THAT ARE NOT VACCINATED, THE DATA, THE DATA AND THE NUMBERS ARE THE NUMBERS, ALMOST EVERYONE IN OUR HOSPITALS RIGHT NOW IN OUR ICU RIGHT NOW ARE PEOPLE THAT HAVE NOT BEEN VACCINATED.

THE NUMBERS ON THE WEBSITE TODAY, REFLECTING A YESTERDAY'S NUMBERS SHOW US THAT WE HAVE 107 PEOPLE IN OUR HOSPITALS.

WE HAVE 41 IN OUR INTENSIVE CARE UNITS.

WE HAVE 21 PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY ON VENTILATORS, AND ALMOST ALL OF THEM ARE PEOPLE THAT HAVE NOT YET BEEN ACTIVATED.

UH, YOU KNOW, THERE ARE SIGNIFICANT NUMBER

[00:10:01]

AMONG US THAT HAVE BEEN VACCINATED.

70% HAVE HAD ONE SHOT OVER 60%, OVER 60%, UH, HAVE BEEN FULLY VACCINATED.

AND THAT'S, THAT'S REAL GOOD NEWS.

AND THERE'S A LOT OF PROTECTION FOR A LOT OF PEOPLE, BUT THAT ALSO MEANS THAT THERE ARE 30% OF US THAT HAVE NOT YET BEEN VACCINATED.

I KNOW THAT THERE ARE MANY OF THOSE PEOPLE THAT ARE WAITING TO SEE WHAT THE VACCINATION EXPERIENCE, UH, WOULD BE ONCE IT ROLLED OUT AND PEOPLE STARTED TAKING IT, THEY WANTED TO WATCH AND, AND LEARN.

UH, AND I UNDERSTAND THAT AT THIS POINT, MILLIONS AND MILLIONS OF THIS VACCINATION VACCINE HAVE BEEN GIVEN TO PEOPLE ALL OVER THE WORLD.

AND THE DATA IS VERY CLEAR.

PATIENTS ARE EXTREMELY SAFE.

THE RISK OF NOT TAKING THE VACCINATION IS GREATER THAN ANY RISK ASSOCIATED WITH TAKING THE VACCINATION.

AND WE ALSO KNOW THAT IT'S VERY, VERY EFFECTIVE, NOT JUST AGAINST THAN THE STANDARD COVID, BUT ALSO AGAINST THE DELTA VARIANT.

IT DOESN'T MEAN ABSOLUTE PROTECTION AGAINST GETTING THE VIRUS, BUT EVEN IF YOU DO, IF YOU'VE BEEN VACCINATED, THERE'S A MUCH GREATER CHANCE THAT YOU'RE GOING TO BE ABLE TO AVOID GOING TO A HOSPITAL OR ENDING UP IN AN ICU OR ON A VENTILATOR OR DYING.

NOW, WHEN YOU'RE MAKING YOUR INDIVIDUAL CALCULATION ABOUT WHETHER OR NOT TO GET VACCINATED AND YOU TAKE INTO ACCOUNT ALL OF THE THINGS THAT, THAT YOU TAKE INTO ACCOUNT, THERE'S AN ADDITIONAL THING THAT I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT YOU PUT INTO YOUR EQUATION WHEN YOU'RE DECIDING WHETHER OR NOT TO GET BACK SUMMATED.

AND THAT'S THE IMPACT ON THE COMMUNITY GENERALLY, BECAUSE WE KNOW THAT AS WE, A GROWING NUMBER OF PEOPLE IN OUR HOSPITALS, AS WE HAVE A GROWING NUMBER OF PEOPLE IN OUR INTENSIVE CARE UNITS, PEOPLE WHO SHOW UP AT OUR HOSPITALS, SICK WITH COVID ARE TAKING UP BEDS, THEY'RE TAKING UP, UH, SERVICES AND SUPPORT AND CARE, UH, THAT OUR HOSPITALS CAN GET.

AND, AND IF WE HAVE AS MANY PEOPLE WITH COVID, AS THE NUMBERS NOW INDICATE WE COULD GET TO, AND WE START GETTING STRESSED FOR THE NUMBER OF BEDS THAT ARE AVAILABLE FOR PEOPLE WHO HAVE HEART ATTACKS ARE INVOLVED IN CAR ACCIDENTS, AND WE'RE NOT THERE YET.

AND, AND WE'RE TALKING TODAY ABOUT THE EARLY SIGNS OF NUMBERS THAT ARE RISING.

UH, AND AS DR WALKS AND DIRECTOR STIRRUP SAID, WE HAVE CONTROL OVER THIS IN OUR COMMUNITY.

WE GET TO DECIDE BOTH INDIVIDUALLY AND COLLECTIVELY IF GRINDED STRESS, OUR HOSPITALS, UH, WITH, UH, INCREASED NUMBER OF PEOPLE, WE HAVE CONTROL OVER THIS.

NOW, LET ME TALK TO THE PEOPLE THAT ARE VACCINATED, BECAUSE YOU HAVE SKIN IN THIS GAME, TOO, EVEN THOUGH YOU HAVE CONSIDERABLY MORE PROTECTION THAN THOSE THAT HAVE NOT BEEN VACCINATED, BECAUSE IF THE VACCINE, IF THE NUMBERS IN OUR HOSPITALS RISE, THAT'S GOING TO IMPACT OUR ENTIRE COMMUNITIES, HEALTH PREPAREDNESS, AND CAPABILITIES.

SO I HEARD EVERYONE, PEOPLE WHO HAVE BEEN VACCINATED INCLUDED TO MAKE SURE THAT OUR FRIENDS AND OUR FAMILIES GET THE INFORMATION AND DATA THAT THEY NEED IN ORDER TO BE ABLE TO MAKE THE CHOICE, TO TAKE THE SHOT, UH, TO GET, UH, TO GET VACCINATED.

IF YOU'RE AN EMPLOYER, HELP YOUR EMPLOYEES GET VACCINATED, DO EVERYTHING WE CAN TO HELP TRY AND GET THE VACCINATION LOW IN OUR COMMUNITY, RISING TO THE DEGREE AND POINT THAT COLLECTIVELY AS A COMMUNITY, WE DON'T HAVE TO BE GOING BACK TO PLACES WE HAVE BEEN IN THE PAST, BUT WE HAVE TO PROTECT OUR HOSPITALS.

YOU KNOW, I WOULD, UH, BORN TO, TO, TO MAKE SURE THAT WE, THAT WE BANG, UH, OUR NURSES AND OUR DOCTORS, UH, HEALTHCARE WORKERS FOR EVERYTHING THAT THEY'VE DONE OVER THE LAST YEAR.

UH, WE HAVE A MORTALITY RATE IN THIS COUNTY THAT IS HALF OF WHAT IT IS IN THE STATE HALF OF WHAT IT IS IN THE NATION.

AND THAT'S BECAUSE AS A COMMUNITY, WE HAVE WORKED TOGETHER AND IT'S BECAUSE OF THE SUPPORT WE'VE HAD IN OUR MEDICAL COMMUNITY.

I KNOW YOU GUYS ARE EXHAUSTED RIGHT NOW AND TIRED, AND I PROMISE YOU THAT THIS COMMUNITY IS GOING TO DO EVERYTHING IT CAN TO PROTECT YOU AND TO KEEP YOU SAFE.

AND FINALLY, I WOULD CONCLUDE WITH, WE CANNOT PRETEND THAT WE ARE DONE WITH A VIRUS THAT IS NOT DONE WITH US, BUT I'M GOING TO TURN IT OVER TO MY COLLEAGUE, UH, JUDGE, UH, JUDGE ANDY BROWN.

THANKS MAYOR.

UM, AND I KNOW, I KNOW OLIVIA RODRIGO, BUT I STILL HOPE YOU'LL LISTEN TO ME.

AND WHAT WE'RE SAYING TODAY AND TAKE OUR ADVICE.

[00:15:01]

UM, YOU KNOW, OBVIOUSLY CARE ABOUT THIS, UH, CAUSE I'M YOUR COUNTY JUDGE BECAUSE I GREW UP HERE IN AUSTIN AND BECAUSE MY WIFE AND I HAVE TWO KIDS WHO FRANKLY, ARE TOO YOUNG TO GET THE VACCINE.

SO IT'S UP TO YOU, IT'S UP TO YOUR FAMILY.

IT'S UP TO YOUR FRIENDS TO GET VACCINATED BECAUSE OUR YOUNGEST KIDS STILL CAN NOT GET VACCINATED.

UM, TODAY'S STAGE THREE ANNOUNCEMENT.

AND THE NEWS FROM THE PUBLIC HEALTH AUTHORITY IS A COMMITMENT FROM OUR DOCTORS TO CONTINUE TO COMMUNICATE THE LATEST THAT AS WE LEARN IT ABOUT THE VIRUS AND THE, THE GUIDANCE HASN'T REALLY CHANGED, THE BEST THING TO DO STILL IS TO GET VACCINATED.

UM, THAT'S THE WAY TO KEEP OUR COMMUNITY SAFE.

THAT'S THE WAY TO PROTECT AGAINST THE VARIANTS, THE DELTA VARIANT, AND WHATEVER OTHER VARIANTS ARE COMING OUT THERE.

SO IF YOU HAVEN'T GOTTEN VACCINATED YET, IT'S NOT TOO LATE TO DO SO.

AND FORTUNATELY, WE'RE NOT LACKING IN THE NUMBER OF PLACES WHERE YOU CAN GET VACCINATED TODAY.

AND THIS WEEKEND THERE'S ACROSS TRAVIS COUNTY, 14 DIFFERENT PLACES WHERE YOU CAN GET VACCINATED.

UM, FOR EXAMPLE, THE TRAVIS COUNTY EXPO CENTER IS OPEN ON SATURDAY AND SUNDAY FROM 9:00 AM TO 5:00 PM FOR A DRIVE-THROUGH CLINIC, IT'S COMPLETELY FREE.

YOU DON'T HAVE TO HAVE AN ID CARD.

YOU DON'T HAVE TO HAVE INSURANCE AND, UM, WOULD ENCOURAGE YOU IF YOU ARE VACCINATED, GET A FRIEND OF YOURS WHO MAYBE HAS BEEN PUTTING IT OFF A FAMILY MEMBER, UM, WHO HAS BEEN RELUCTANT AND LET THEM KNOW THAT THIS IS THE TIME TO GET VACCINATED, BECAUSE THIS IS THE ONLY WAY THAT WE'RE GOING TO GET RID OF COVID FOR GOOD.

YOU CAN GET THE OTHER LOCATIONS, UH, OF THE OTHER 14 PLACES TO GET VACCINATED AT TRAVIS COUNTY, TX.GOV.

ALSO, IF YOU OWN A BUSINESS, OR IF YOU'RE PART OF A BUSINESS THAT WANTS TO GET YOUR WORKERS VACCINATED, WE HAVE OPTIONS FOR YOU AS WELL.

YOU CAN CONTACT AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH.

UH, AS ADRIAN MENTIONED EARLIER, TO GET THIS SET UP AND MORE THAN ANYTHING, WHERE WE'RE ALSO CALLING ON BUSINESSES, GOVERNMENTAL ENTITIES, UH, ANY, ANY WORKING ENVIRONMENT TO GIVE PEOPLE TIME AWAY FROM WORK TO ENSURE THAT THAT IS NOT A BARRIER FOR ANYONE WANTING TO GET THE VACCINE.

IF YOU'RE ABLE TO GET VACCINATED, PLEASE DON'T WAIT.

THE MORE PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY WHO ARE FULLY VACCINATED MEANS THAT OUR KIDS AND TEACHERS CAN SAFELY GO BACK TO SCHOOL.

OUR COMMUNITIES LIVE MUSIC SCENE AND RESTAURANTS CAN BE SAFELY ENJOYED, AND WE'LL ALL BE ABLE TO AVOID ANY MORE PREVENTABLE DEATHS TO THIS AWFUL DISEASE IF WE ALL GET VACCINATED.

UM, BUT DON'T WAIT, THIS IS, THIS IS THE TIME TO DO IT.

IF YOU'VE BEEN WAITING, THIS IS THE, THE VOICE TELLING YOU THAT YOU SHOULD GET VACCINATED.

NOW, UM, I'M GOING TO SAY A LITTLE BIT OF THAT IN SPANISH NOW, SAY LAST COMO EL DELTA.

I DON'T KNOW.

I SAY NO.

SAY NO, AS THE OR AS THEY FINISH THE MANA A FORTUNE, THE OPPORTUNITY THAT IS PART OF AKRON ARNAUD'S SO SORT OF AS THEY FINISH THE MINOR AND TOLD HER THAT CONDUCT CONDUCTED, THEY TRAVIS, THE NAME WAS FOR HIM PLO EXPO CENTER.

THAT'LL CONDADO THERE.

TRAVIS IS THAT DOMINGO AS BETWEEN THIS AMOUNT AND THE NUEVA HUNA, AT LEAST A COMPLETER.

THEY ASKED US IN TRAVIS COUNTY, TX PUNTO GOLF TAMBIEN OUR SIDE.

THANK YOU VERY MUCH.

AND, UM, I WILL PASS IT ON TO, UH, THE NEXT SPEAKER.

THAT WOULD BE ME.

THANK YOU, JUDGE BROWN.

AT THIS TIME, WE WILL OPEN UP OUR QUESTIONS ON BEHALF OF THE MEDIA ASTON SANDERS ON BEHALF OF THE AUSTIN CHRONICLE.

WE'LL START ASKING QUESTIONS AT THIS TIME, AUSTIN, OVER TO YOU.

THANKS.

YEAH, THIS IS AUSTIN SANDERS WITH THE CHRONICLE.

AND THIS FIRST QUESTION IS FOR ME.

UM, WE'VE BEEN TALKING A LOT ABOUT THE IMPORTANCE OF GETTING VACCINATED AND, UH, THE NEW GOAL OF, UM, HAVING 70% OF THE COUNTY POPULATION FULLY VACCINATED BY SEPTEMBER 1ST.

WHAT, WHAT KIND OF NEW PROGRAMS OR INITIATIVES, UM, CAN THE CITY OR THE COUNTY, UH, IMPLEMENT TO HELP OUR COMMUNITY REACH THAT GOAL? AND I THINK SPECIFICALLY AMONG POPULATIONS THAT,

[00:20:01]

UM, HAVE LOWER VACCINATION RATES, THANK YOU FOR THAT QUESTION.

I'LL START AND THEN INVITE MY COLLEAGUES TO ADD.

UM, SINCE THE VACCINE HAS BECOME AVAILABLE, WE SCREEN ALL OF OUR COMMUNITY PARTNERS.

WE NEED TO GET BY OVER 400,000 SHOTS.

WE'VE USED A VARIETY OF METHODS FROM, UH, MASS CLINICS, UM, TO MUNI COMMUNITY-BASED STATIC LOCATIONS AT OUR LIBRARIES.

AND NOW WE'RE MOVING TO THE PHASE WHERE WE'RE REALLY TAKING OUR SHOW ON THE ROAD.

UM, THE TRAVIS COUNTY COLLABORATIVE HAS SEVERAL OFFERINGS AT DIFFERENT JD SUPERMARKETS AND OTHER LOCATIONS WITHIN COMMUNITY.

WE'RE REALLY TRYING TO BE IN PLACES WHERE PEOPLE WORK, PLAY, PRAY AND LIVE.

WE'VE PARTNERED WITH MANY CHURCHES ON THE EAST SIDE TO HOST VACCINATE VACCINE CLINICS, AND WE'LL CONTINUE TO DO SO.

IF YOU ARE A BUSINESS, A COMMUNITY ORGANIZATION, A CHURCH THAT WOULD LIKE TO HOST THE VACCINE CLINIC AT YOUR LOCATION, THERE'S AN ONLINE FORM THAT CAN BE FOUND AT ON OUR APH WEBSITE THAT YOU CAN FILL OUT.

AND WE CAN SCHEDULE OUR TEAM TO COME OUT AND MEET WITH YOU.

WE'RE AT THIS POINT IN THE GAME WHERE WE REALLY NEED TO BE INTENTIONAL IN OUR FOCUS AND THE MESSAGING, UM, IT'S AVAILABLE, RIGHT? AND NOW WE HAVE TO GIVE PEOPLE ENOUGH INFORMATION.

SO THEY FEEL COMFORTABLE, COMFORTABLE IN MAKING THE CHOICE TO GET THEMSELVES AND THEIR FAMILY VACCINATED.

TO THAT EFFORT.

WE ARE GOING TO CONTINUE TO PARTNER WITH THE COUNTY TO DEPLOY BOOTS ON THE GROUND OPERATIONS, TO COME BE IN YOUR NEIGHBORHOOD AND NOT NECESSARILY GIVE THE SHOT ON THAT FIRST DAY, BUT BE AVAILABLE TO ANSWER ANY QUESTIONS THAT YOU MAY HAVE TO DISSEMINATE INFORMATION ABOUT THE VACCINE.

SO YOU CAN READ THE INFORMATION FOR YOURSELF, HAVE A CHANCE TO DIGEST AND TALK WITH YOUR FRIENDS.

AND IF WE GET TO THE POINT IN OUR CONVERSATIONS AFTER WE SHOW UP DAY AFTER DAY AFTER DAY, BECAUSE WE WILL, WE WILL DIRECT YOU TO ONE OF OUR VACCINE LOCATIONS.

UM, WE'RE PROUD TO HAVE INVESTED THAT THE COUNTY AND THE CITY HAVE INVESTED IN LOCAL COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS, BECAUSE WE KNOW AT, AT SOME POINT WE MIGHT NOT BE THE FACE OR THE VOICE THAT THE PERSON WANTS TO RESPOND TO.

AND WE'RE GOING TO HAVE TO LEAN ON OUR COMMUNITY PARTNERS THAT HAVE DEEPER AND CONNECTED RELATIONSHIPS WITH PEOPLE WHEN WE'RE TRYING TO CONVINCE THEM TO MAKE THIS VERY PERSONAL DECISION.

AND SO WE WILL CONTINUE TO PARTNER WITH THOSE COMMUNITY-BASED ORGANIZATIONS, PROVIDING RESOURCES, INFORMATION, SHOTS, WHATEVER IT IS THAT WE NEED TO HAVE THIS COLLECTIVE COMMUNITY APPROACH TO ENSURE THAT WE ARE GIVING EVERYONE ENOUGH INFORMATION AND ENOUGH OPPORTUNITY TO GET VACCINATED.

WE WILL CONTINUE TO HAVE LOW BARRIER OPTIONS.

GAR ARE THE DAYS WHERE YOU HAD TO STAND IN THE QUEUE IN THE INTERNET WORLD, LOOKING FOR A VACCINE SHOT.

YOU CAN COME TO ANY LOCATION WHERE WE ARE WITHOUT FILLING OUT ANY PAPERWORK AND GET A VACCINATION.

YOU CAN CALL 3, 1, 1.

IF YOU HAVE QUESTIONS, THEY'LL DIRECT YOU TO OUR NURSE LINE, OUR COMMUNITY CARE CLINICS AND OTHER, UM, COMMUNITY CLINICS ARE OPEN AND AVAILABLE TO ANSWER QUESTIONS TO FOLKS.

IT'S ALL ABOUT MAKING CONNECTIONS AT THIS POINT.

UM, AND BEING THERE, WE ARE COMMITTED AS A COMMUNITY, AS A COUNTY, AS CITY TO BE THERE, TO PROVIDE THE INFORMATION AND TO PROVIDE THE VACCINATIONS.

I'LL JUMP IN ON THAT ONE TOO.

THE, JUST A COUPLE OF THE THINGS.

SO WE DID THE MASS VACCINATION CLINICS THAT WERE, WERE GREAT WHEN TONS OF PEOPLE WANTING TO GET IT AND WOULD DRIVE TO DO IT, AND WE HAVE NOT STOPPED.

THEN NOW WE ARE GOING TO WHERE PEOPLE ARE.

UM, WE HAVE BEEN DOING THAT FOR THE LAST SEVERAL MONTHS IN AN EFFORT LED BY CONSTABLE GEORGE MIRALIS AND CHIEF BAILEY AND ASCENSION SETON AND OTHERS.

AND IN PARTNERSHIP WITH APH AND TRAVIS COUNTY.

UM, FOR EXAMPLE, TODAY, IF ANYBODY WANTS TO GET A VACCINE, UH, THERE ARE FOUR JD SUPERMARKETS THAT WE'LL BE GIVING THEM OUT WITH OUR TEAMS FROM TRAVIS COUNTY AFTER 5:30 PM TODAY, ONE ON CAMERON ROAD, DECKER LANE, FMA 12, FM 5 35, UH, THIS AFTERNOON ALSO LITTLE WALNUT CREEK LIBRARY, SOUTHEAST LIBRARY LBJ, EARLY HIGH SCHOOL, UH, AISD, UT LAMAR, MIDDLE SCHOOL, ELGON HIGH SCHOOL, VIRGINIA ROBERTS RECREATION CENTER, TURNER ROBERTS RECREATION CENTER, AND AVANT ON THE TURQUOISE CENTER ON GONZALEZ STREET.

THERE, THERE IS NO LACK OF PLACES WHERE PEOPLE CAN GO TODAY, TOMORROW THIS WEEKEND TO GET A VACCINE.

AND AS DIRECTOR STERN SAID, UH, YOU CAN ALSO CALL 3, 1, 1 TO SCHEDULE A TIME.

UH, IF YOU WANT TO SET UP A VACCINATION AT A, AT A CHURCH OR ANOTHER PLACE OF YOUR OWN OR AT YOUR EMPLOYER.

ALL RIGHT, THANKS.

SO I'LL MOVE ON TO THE NEXT QUESTION.

IT'S FROM A CBS AUSTIN, AND THEY ASKED WERE THE

[00:25:01]

PEOPLE WHO TESTED POSITIVE FOR THE DELTA VARIANT IN AUSTIN VACCINATED FOR COVID.

IN OTHER WORDS, WERE ANY OF THESE BREAKTHROUGH CASES? I'LL TAKE THAT QUESTION.

UM, WE JUST RECEIVED THOSE REPORTS YESTERDAY AND OUR CASE INVESTIGATORS ARE GATHERING THE INFORMATION.

AND SO WE DON'T HAVE THE FULL PICTURE AT THIS POINT.

UM, BUT WE WILL GET BACK WITH YOU WHEN WE HAVE MORE COMPLETE INFORMATION.

OKAY, THANKS.

UH, NEXT WE HAVE A QUESTION FROM COMMUNITY IMPACT WITH ICU CAPACITY STRAINED.

IS THERE ANY CONCERN THAT A P H WILL NEED TO STAND UP ITS ALTERNATIVE CARE SITE AT THE CONVENTION CENTER? AT THIS POINT, WE ARE, UM, EVALUATING THE SITUATION.

AND WHEN WE SEE THAT THE SITUATION DICTATES, UM, SCALING UP OUR RESOURCES, WE WILL TAKE THOSE STEPS TO DO SO.

AT THIS POINT, WE ARE REQUESTING THAT WE, UM, GET SOME STAFF HELP FROM THE STATE OF TEXAS, AND THAT'S WHERE WE ARE AT THIS POINT.

OKAY.

THE NEXT QUESTION IS FROM FOX SEVEN, UH, I'LL COME BACK TO THEM.

WE'VE GOT ONE FROM KOP RADIO.

UH, ACCORDING TO A RECENT ANALYSIS, THERE ARE FIVE LOW, LOW VACCINATED CLUSTERS THAT COULD PUT THE ENTIRE COUNTRY AT RISK.

TWO ARE IN TEXAS IN HOUSTON, HAS REPORTED EVIDENCE OF EVERY KNOWN VARIANT.

HOW DOES THAT IMPACT THE VACCINATED AND UNVACCINATED IN AUSTIN, TRAVIS COUNTY? WHAT THAT TELLS US IS THAT WE NEED TO REDOUBLE OUR EFFORTS TO CONTINUE TO DO WHAT WE'VE DONE TO DECREASE THE NUMBER OF CASES IN OUR COUNTY.

UM, WE NEED TO DO WHAT WE'RE DOING TODAY, WHICH IS ENCOURAGED PEOPLE TO GO AND BE VACCINATED.

AND FOR THOSE WHO ARE UNPROTECTED, BECAUSE THEY'RE EITHER NOT VACCINATED OR PARTIALLY VACCINATED, ENCOURAGE THEM STRONGLY RECOMMEND TO THEM THAT THEY WEAR MASKS UNTIL THEY ARE COMPLETELY PROTECTED, THAT SCENES WORK TO PREVENT THEIR DISEASE AND ILLNESS AND HOSPITALIZATIONS AND DEATH.

AND SO THAT IS THE GOAL IS TO GET US TO A POINT WHERE WE HAVE A NUMBER OF PEOPLE, THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE IN OUR COMMUNITY THAT ARE PROTECTED, THAT'S SUFFICIENT TO CALL IT HERD IMMUNITY THAT STOPS THE VIRUS IN ITS TRACKS, AND THEN SUSPENDED.

OKAY.

BACK TO THE QUESTION FROM FOX SEVEN, IS THERE AN ATTRITION ISSUE WITH HOSPITAL STAFFING THAT IS CONTRIBUTING TO THE POSSIBLE STRAIN ON RESOURCES? I THINK THE HOSPITALS ARE REPORTING TO US THAT THEIR STAFFS ARE CERTAINLY TIRED AND HAVE GONE THROUGH A CONSIDERABLE, UH, A YEAR.

UH, AND, AND YES, IT, IT IS HARDER TO, TO GET QUALIFIED NURSES AND QUALIFY, UH, HEALTHCARE, UH, FOLKS, UH, NOW THAN, THAN A YEAR AGO.

UH, SO THAT BECOMES ONE OF MANY FACTORS THAT ARE BETTER CONSIDERED IN LOOKING AT THE CAPACITY, UH, THAT OUR INTENSIVE CARE UNITS HAVE.

OKAY.

NEXT FROM, UH, THE STATESMAN, SEVERAL ORGANIZATIONS AND NONPROFITS HAVE STARTED TO TAKE IT UPON THEMSELVES TO HOLD VACCINE CLINICS IN THEIR COMMUNITIES, WHAT RESOURCES AND HELP IS BEING PROVIDED TO THOSE GROUPS, I'LL START AND THEN INVITE MY COLLEAGUES TO ADD IT AS THEY SEE FIT.

UM, I, FOR ONE, I'M GLAD THAT OUR COMMUNITY BASED ORGANIZATIONS ARE PLAYING A ROLE IN THIS.

WE'VE BEEN SAYING FROM THE BEGINNING THAT WE'RE GOING TO GET THERE TOGETHER AS THE JUDGE MENTIONED, UM, SINCE THE, UM, BETWEEN APH COMMUNITY CARE AND THE TRAVIS COUNTY COLLABORATIVE, WE'VE GIVEN OVER 400,000 VACCINATIONS, UM, WE'VE WORKED TOGETHER TO GET TO THE 70% GOAL OF FIRST DOSES, WHICH IS HUGE.

AND SO, UM, I APPLAUD OUR COMMUNITY

[00:30:01]

PARTNERS FIRST FOR STEPPING IN AND STEPPING UP.

UM, AND WE ARE HERE TO SUPPORT WHETHER IT'S PROVIDING VACCINATORS, UM, WHETHER IT'S TRANSFERRING DOSES THAT WE MAY HAVE TO SUPPORT EVENTS, WHETHER IT'S PROVIDING TRANSLATION ASSISTANCE OR EVEN SIMPLY PROMOTING THE EVENTS.

WE UNDERSTAND THAT WE'RE IN IT TOGETHER.

WE ALSO UNDERSTAND THAT SOME ORGANIZATIONS, AS I SAID BEFORE, MAYBE MORE UNIQUELY POSITIONED TO MEET THE NEEDS OF, UM, OUR HISTORICALLY UNDERSERVED POPULATIONS.

AND SO WE'RE THERE TO SUPPORT IN ANY WAY POSSIBLE.

THANKS DR.

SIRVA, AND JUST, UH, TO, TO FOCUS ON THAT AGAIN, OVERALL, WE WERE VERY HAPPY WITH THE 70% OF PEOPLE.

WHO'VE GOTTEN AT LEAST ONE DOSE, UM, THAT WE ANNOUNCED LAST WEEK.

UM, BUT THAT DOESN'T MEAN THAT EVERYWHERE IN THE COUNTY, WITHIN THE COUNTY, THAT WE'VE ACHIEVED THE SAME RESULTS.

AND SO WE'RE STILL WORKING VERY HARD UNTIL EVERY ZIP CODE WITHIN TRAVIS COUNTY.

EVERY NEIGHBORHOOD WITHIN TRAVIS COUNTY IS AT THOSE LEVELS WHERE WE FEEL LIKE WE'RE GETTING TO HERD IMMUNITY.

SO WE'RE NOT THERE YET.

UM, WE HAVE NOT STOPPED WORKING ON THAT, AND WE'RE VERY HAPPY WHEN COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS, UH, CAPITOL METRO, THE NATIONAL GUARD, ASCENSION SETON, UM, EVERYBODY PITCHES IN TOGETHER TO GET A VACCINE RATES INCREASED ALL ACROSS TRAVIS COUNTY, AND WE'RE NOT GONNA STOP UNTIL, UNTIL WE GET THERE.

I ALSO THINK THAT A LOT OF THE EVENTS THAT ARE HAPPENING AROUND THE COMMUNITY THAT ARE BEING DONE BY COMMUNITY ORGANIZATIONS ARE ACTUALLY BACKED UP BY AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH OR BY TRAVIS COUNTY.

AND, AND LIKE, AND THAT MIGHT NOT BE APPARENT ON ITS FACE, UH, BECAUSE WE'RE DOING EVERYTHING WE CAN TO EMPOWER LOCAL ORGANIZATIONS AND LOCAL COMMUNITY GROUPS TO DO THIS KIND OF THING.

UH, WE THINK THAT'S PROBABLY ONE OF THE BEST WAYS FOR OUR COMMUNITY TO REACH THE LEVELS THAT WE NEED, ESPECIALLY IN, IN THOSE COMMUNITIES THAT ARE, THAT ARE HARD TO GET TO.

SO, UH, AS A DIRECTOR TO SERVE.

SO WE'RE ALL IN THIS TOGETHER AND I'M, WE'RE ALL SUPPORTING ONE ANOTHER.

OKAY.

UH, OUR NEXT QUESTION IS FROM KX A N WHICH COVID VACCINE DID THE PEOPLE WITH BREAKTHROUGH CASES GET BEFORE THEY GOT COVID.

SOME ARE CONCERNED, THE JOHNSON AND JOHNSON ONE DOSE SHOT ISN'T AS EFFECTIVE AS THE TWO OTHER VACCINES.

SO WE HAVE DATA ON, UM, PATIENTS THAT HAD HAD BREAKTHROUGH CASES, AND WE ARE ANALYZING THAT DATA TO MAKE A DETERMINATION AS TO THE EFFECTIVENESS OF THE VACCINES.

CURRENTLY, THE SCIENCE SHOWS THAT ALL OF THE VACCINES THAT WE ARE USING ARE EFFECTIVE AT REDUCING SEVERE DISEASE, ILLNESS, AND DEATH.

THERE IS SOME PRELIMINARY INFORMATION TO SUGGEST THAT J AND J IS NOT QUITE AS EFFECTIVE AS THE MADRONA AND PFIZER VACCINES, BUT OUR DATA IS STILL BEING REVIEWED.

OKAY, THANK YOU.

UH, NEXT FROM K U T WHAT'S THE BREAKDOWN OF THE HOSPITALIZED BEFORE YOU MOVE PAST IT? LET ME JUST ADD TO THAT, THAT, THAT ALL THREE VACCINATIONS ARE STILL REAL EFFECTIVE.

UH, UH, ESPECIALLY AT PREVENTING HOSPITALIZATIONS AND ICU.

UH, I TOOK THE J AND J VACCINE PERSONALLY AND, AND, AND FEEL VERY CONFIDENT, UH, THAT, UH, THE STEPS THAT I'VE TAKEN, THE STEPS MY DAUGHTER TOOK TAKING THE SAME VACCINE, UM, OR PROTECTING US FROM, FROM THOSE, UH, AT THE VERY LEAST FROM THOSE SEVERE SITUATIONS.

UH, AND, AND, AND AT THIS POINT, UH, THERE'S NO CDC RECOMMENDATION TO DO ANYTHING ELSE TO BOOSTER THAT OR ANYTHING.

UH, THE NUMBERS ARE JUST SO HIGH AMONG ALL THREE, UH, THAT I THINK THE REAL TAKEAWAY IS THAT, UH, WHATEVER VACCINE YOU CAN GET STILL IS THE RIGHT VACCINE TO TAKE, UH, BECAUSE THEY ALL ARE VERY EFFECTIVE, UH, IN, IN FIGHTING BOTH THE STANDARD VIRUS, AS WELL AS THE DELTA VARIANT.

CORRECT.

ALL OF THE VACCINES ARE VERY EFFECTIVE AT PREVENTING SEVERE DISEASE, ILLNESS, AND HOSPITALIZATION.

SO PLEASE GET VACCINATED.

ALL RIGHT.

THANKS FOR THOSE ADDITIONAL COMMENTS, UH, FROM KUT, UH, WHAT'S

[00:35:01]

THE BREAKDOWN OF HOSPITALIZED PATIENTS WHO HAVE BEEN VACCINATED VERSUS UNVACCINATED.

WE KNOW THAT THE MAJORITY OF THE PATIENTS WHO WERE HOSPITALIZED ARE UNVACCINATED.

OKAY, THANKS.

UH, FROM, FROM KVU DID ALL FOUR PEOPLE TEST POSITIVE AT THE SAME HEALTHCARE CENTER OR TESTING SITE IN AUSTIN, OR ARE THEY SPREAD OUT? ARE ANY OF THE PEOPLE WHO TESTED POSITIVE FOR THE DELTA VARIANTS HOSPITALIZED? UM, OUR PRELIMINARY INFORMATION SHOWS THAT PEOPLE WERE TESTED AT VARIOUS PLACES, AND WE KNOW THAT ONE PERSON IS HOSPITALIZED.

OKAY.

THANKS NEXT FROM OSTEOPENIA.

UH, WHAT DOES DEMAND FOR VACCINE APPOINTMENTS LOOK LIKE AT AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH AND TRAVIS COUNTY PROVIDERS RIGHT NOW? UM, I'LL, I'LL START, IT'S NOT WHERE WE WOULD LIKE IT TO BE.

UM, HAVE YOU BEEN FOLLOWING THE BRIEFINGS THAT THERE'S NO SECRET THAT THE AMOUNT OF VACCINES THAT WE'VE BEEN ABLE TO GIVE SUCCESSFULLY WEEK OVER WEEK HAVE DROPPED OFF? THAT BEING SAID, WE WILL CONTINUE TO HAVE OUR LOCATIONS IN THE US AT THE SOUTHEAST LIBRARY AT THE LITTLE WALNUT CREEK LIBRARY AND OTHER PLACES MOBILE WILL BE THERE.

WE WILL CONTINUE TO PROVIDE VACCINES UNTIL WE REACHED THE PLACE WHERE OUR ENTIRE COMMUNITY IS PROTECTED.

OKAY.

FROM A UNIVISION.

UH, WE KNOW THE DELTA VARIANT HAS BEEN IN TEXAS FOR A WHILE.

WHY ARE WE JUST NOW DETECTING THE FIRST CASES? HAVE WE NOT BEEN TESTING FOR THE VARIANCE? THERE'S BEEN LIMITED SEQUENCING, DONE TESTING FOR VARIANTS DONE, UM, BECAUSE OF LIMITED ACCESS TO THAT CAPABILITY.

AND SO THE TESTING THAT'S AVAILABLE, UM, THROUGH THE STATE IS BEING DONE ON PATIENTS WHO ARE HOSPITALIZED OR PATIENTS WHO HAVE DIED AND THE OTHER PLACE LOCALLY PLACES LOCALLY, WHERE TESTING IS BEING DONE, OR, UM, BAYLOR SCOTT AND WHITE JUST, UM, SYSTEM AND UT SYSTEM.

UM, BUT BECAUSE OF THE LIMITATION AND AVAILABILITY FOR SEQUENCING, WE ARE NOT, WE HAVE NOT IDENTIFIED ANYTHING UP UNTIL YESTERDAY WHEN WE RECEIVED THOSE CONFIRMED REPORTS.

OKAY.

THANKS.

UH, BACK TO THE TOP AND ANOTHER QUESTION FROM ME, UH, SO IT SEEMS LIKE, YOU KNOW, IT SEEMS LIKE THERE'S PLENTY OF, UH, VACCINE SUPPLY, UM, AND ABILITY TO ADMINISTER THE DOSES, BUT THE DEMAND ISN'T THERE.

UH, SO HAVE THE CITY OR THE COUNTY, UM, CONSIDERED SOME KIND OF LOTTERY SYSTEM, UH, THAT OTHER STATES AND COMMUNITIES HAVE DONE TO ENCOURAGE PEOPLE TO GET VACCINATED.

I THINK YOU'RE MUTED.

OH, GO AHEAD.

WELL, I'LL START.

AND THEN IF DR.

WACHS WOULD LIKE TO CHIME IN, WE'LL SURELY GIVE HER THE SPACE TO DO SO.

UM, THE CITY AND THE COUNTY HAVE TALKED ABOUT VARIOUS WAYS TO, UM, INCENTIVIZE AND MAKE IT EASY FOR PEOPLE TO BECOME VACCINATED.

UM, SEVERAL OF THE SURVEYS THAT WE HAVE, UH, DISTRIBUTED THROUGH COMMUNITY SHOW THAT PEOPLE ARE CONCERNED ABOUT TAKING TIME OFF WORK AND LOSS OF WAGES.

AND SO TO BE ABLE TO PROVIDE SUPPORT, UM, BY MEANS OF GIFT CARDS ARE SOMETHING THAT WE'VE, UM, WORKED ON AS A COMMUNITY.

I KNOW CENTRAL HEALTH HAS STARTED THAT PROCESS AS SEVERAL OF THEIR LOCATIONS AND THE CITY AND THE COUNTY CONTINUE TO WORK TOGETHER TO SEE WHAT RESOURCES THAT WE CAN BRING TO BEAR, TO, UM, EXPAND AND AUGMENT THOSE PROGRAMS. OKAY.

UH, CBS, AUSTIN ASKS, WHAT CAN AUSTIN PUBLIC HEALTH DO TO GET A MORE ACCURATE PICTURE OF HOW WIDESPREAD THE

[00:40:01]

DELTA VARIANCE IS IN THE AUSTIN AREA CAN MORE TESTING OR THE DELTA VARIANT BE REQUESTED OR SUPPLEMENTED? THE STATE IS CURRENTLY WORKING ON AUGMENTING OUR CAPABILITIES WITH REGARDS TO SAFETY SAYING, HOWEVER, GOING FORWARD, WE ARE IDENTIFYING PEOPLE WHO HAVE CODED, AND WE ARE ASKING THEM TO STAY AT HOME AND ISOLATE IN THEIR OWN ROOM, USING THEIR OWN BATHROOM TO MITIGATE THE SPREAD, TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF COVID IN OUR COMMUNITY.

UM, THAT'S WHAT WE DO, WHETHER IT'S THE DELTA VARIANT OR THE ORIGINAL NOVEL SARS COV, TWO VIRUS THAT WE STARTED WITH, UM, IF THEY ARE SECOND ENOUGH AND HAVE SEVERE ENOUGH DISEASE TO REQUIRE HOSPITALIZATION, THAT'S GOING TO CONTINUE JUST AS IS.

SO OUR ABILITY TO DO SEQUENCING IS BEING ADDRESSED.

OUR ABILITY TO TREAT AND IDENTIFY IS STILL THE SAME AND WILL CONTINUE AS IS.

OKAY, THANKS.

UH, FROM K O P RADIO, THERE HAS BEEN NO WORD ON A VIABLE VACCINATION FOR THOSE UNDER 12 WHILE SUMMER CAMPS ARE HAVING OUTBREAKS IN THE SCHOOL YEAR APPROACHES, WHAT IS YOUR ADVICE TO AISD? WE ARE ALIGNING OURSELVES WITH THE CDC GUIDANCE, UM, AND WE'LL CONTINUE TO DO SO.

WE ARE URGING THOSE WHO ARE ELIGIBLE FOR VACCINE TOLD AND OLDER TO GO AND GET VACCINATED.

AND WE ARE ALSO, UH, STRONGLY RECOMMENDING THAT PEOPLE WHO ARE UNPROTECTED WEAR MASKS OKAY.

FROM THE STATESMAN DATA SHOWS THAT SEVERAL ZIP CODES EAST OF SIT BELOW 50% VACCINATION VACCINE COVERAGE.

WHAT IS THE CITY AND COUNTY DOING TO GET THOSE PEOPLE VACCINATED? HAPPY TO START ON THAT ONE.

SO AS SOON AS WE FINISHED, UH, KIND OF WOUND DOWN THE CIRCUIT OF THE AMERICA'S MASS VACCINATION, UH, CLINIC, WE MOVED TO THE EXPO CENTER, UH, WHICH IS ALSO LOCATED IN EASTERN TRAVIS COUNTY.

UM, BUT MORE IMPORTANTLY, UH, CONSTABLE GEORGE MIRALIS AND CHIEF BAILEY.

WHO'S THE FIRE CHIEF OF ESD 11, UH, PARTNERED WITH SETON AND TRAVIS COUNTY AND APH TO ACTUALLY HAVE TEAMS THAT GO OUT, FOCUSING ON THOSE, THOSE SAME ZIP CODES AND THOSE SAME, UH, UH, PRECINCTS THAT YOU'RE TALKING ABOUT IN EASTERN TRAVIS COUNTY TO TRY TO GET THE NUMBERS THERE UP TO ABOVE, ABOVE 50%, WHICH I THINK THAT WE HAVE DONE IN ONE ZIP CODE AT LEAST.

AND WE'RE, YOU KNOW, NOT GOING TO STOP WORKING UNTIL, UNTIL WE GET THEM ALL, UH, ABOVE THAT LEVEL AND BEYOND.

AND SO IT'S, IT'S HARD WORK.

IT'S NOT, YOU CAN'T GET THE SAME NUMBERS THAT YOU GET WHEN YOU'VE GOT 15,000 PEOPLE COMING PER WEEKEND'S, A CIRCUIT OF THE AMERICA IS.

UM, BUT IT'S AN, AND I THINK UP TO UP NOW FROM WHEN THEY STARTED TILL NOW, I THINK THEY'VE HIT ABOUT, I THINK ABOUT 18,000, UH, DUMPSTERS HAVE BEEN GIVEN, I BELIEVE THROUGH THAT EFFORT.

AND, UM, WE'RE LOOKING AT WAYS TO EXPAND IT, UM, GIVEN THE, THE NEW, UH, ISSUES WITH THE DELTA VARIANT AND, UM, ANY WAY THAT WE CAN DO IT IN PARTNERSHIP WITH, WITH THE CITY AND OTHER GROUPS.

UM, WE'RE, WE'RE GOING TO DO IT, JUST LOOKING AT THE MAP OF THE DIFFERENT CLINICS THAT ARE OPEN TODAY.

AND THIS WEEKEND THERE, SOME ARE BEING DONE BY APH SOME BY TRAVIS COUNTY, SOME BY CONSTABLE PRECINCT FOR MOST OF THEM ARE PARTNERSHIP OF THOSE GROUPS.

UH, CAPITOL METRO IS, IS PARTNERING WITH ONE AT JDS SUPERMARKET, THE NATIONAL GUARD OR THE, OR THE STATE GUARD IS COMING IN TO PARTNER WITH TRAVIS COUNTY AT ANOTHER J D SUPERMARKET, UH, UT UM, IT'S A GROUP EFFORT AND WE'RE DOING, UH, WE'RE, WE'RE STILL WORKING AT IT AND WE'RE NOT SATISFIED YET WITH THE RESULT, BUT WE'RE STILL WORKING TO INCREASE THOSE NUMBERS.

I DON'T THINK MOST, IF NOT, ALL OF THE EFFORTS ARE REALLY FOCUSED, UH, ON THE NON, THE NON DISTRIBUTED MEASURES THAT YOU'VE HEARD ABOUT EARLIER IN THE PRESS CONFERENCE.

UM, MO I MEAN, MANDY, IF NOT, MOST OF THEM ARE BEING TARGETED TO THOSE AREAS THAT YOU ASKED ABOUT.

[00:45:01]

AND I'LL JUST ADD TO THAT QUICKLY, UM, WEEKLY, THE TEAMS LOOK AT THAT FIRST DOSE PENETRATION MAP, AND WE OVERLAY THAT WITH PLACES.

UM, WE'VE, WE'VE BEEN, AND WE PLAN TO BE, AND WE'RE REALLY USING THAT DATA TO DRIVE OUR STRATEGY.

UM, MORE RECENTLY HERE, WE'VE ASKED THE CITY DEMOGRAPHER TO PREPARE A PROFILE OF, UH, THE RESIDENTS IN THOSE ZIP CODES.

SO WHEN WE'RE THINKING ABOUT EVERYTHING FROM OUR MESSAGING TO THE METHOD OF DELIVERY, UM, WE'RE, WE'RE TAKING THOSE DATA POINTS INTO CONSIDERATION AND CAREFULLY CONSTRUCTING A STRATEGY AROUND THAT.

AND WE ARE NOW ALSO LOOKING BACK AT SURVEY ANALYSIS IN FOLLOW UP TO MAKE SURE THAT OUR STRATEGIES ARE WORKING AND TO ALSO MAKE ANY ADJUSTMENTS TO THOSE STRATEGIES.

WE UNDERSTAND THAT THOSE COMMUNITIES ARE THE HARDEST HIT COMMUNITIES WHEN IT COMES TO DISEASE AND DEATH.

AND WE ALSO RECOGNIZE THAT ALMOST ALL OF THE PEOPLE WHO ARE BEING HOSPITALIZED AT THIS POINT, UM, BECAUSE OF SEVERE DISEASE AND DEATH ARE FROM COMMUNITIES THAT ARE, HAVE BEEN AT, UM, ADVERSELY IMPACTED BY COVID-19 THROUGHOUT THIS PANDEMIC.

SO WE ARE REALLY, REALLY FOCUSING ON TRYING TO GET AS MANY PEOPLE BACK SEDATED AS WE CAN, AND THE COLLABORATION FROM THE CITY AND THE COUNTY AND OUR COMMUNITY PARTNERS WILL CONTINUE TO BE NECESSARY SO THAT THOSE TRUSTED VOICES ARE HEARD.

AND THOSE PEOPLE THAT ARE UNVACCINATED RECEIVE VACCINATIONS.

OKAY, THANKS.

OUR NEXT QUESTION IS FROM KX A N A THEY ASK, ARE YOU ASKING VACCINATED PEOPLE TO RETURN TO MASKING? AT THIS POINT, WE ARE LOOKING AT THE SITUATION AND WE WILL MAKE ANY, UM, ADJUSTMENTS TO OUR GUIDANCE AS WE CONTINUE TO EVALUATE.

BUT AT THIS POINT WE ARE ASKING FOR PEOPLE WHO ARE UNVACCINATED AND UNPROTECTED TO WEAR A MASK.

YEAH.

AND RIGHT NOW, WHAT WE'RE ASKING PEOPLE TO DO IS TO GET VACCINATED.

AND THEN THAT'S THE NUMBER ONE THING THAT PEOPLE CAN DO TO PROTECT OUR COMMUNITY.

IT'S ALL OF US WORKING TOGETHER TO VACCINATE AND CONVINCE PEOPLE WHO ARE NOT YET VACCINATED, BUT ELIGIBLE FOR IT TO GET A VACCINATION, NOT TO SAY LIKE MY KIDS WHO ARE FOUR AND SIX, WHEN THEY WENT TO A SUMMER SCHOOL PROGRAM, THEY, THEY WORE MASKS EVERYDAY.

I ENCOURAGED THEM TO DO THAT.

UM, I WOULD WEAR A MASK WHEN PICKING THEM UP FROM SCHOOL AND THINGS LIKE THAT.

I THINK THAT POPULATION UNDER 12 IS OF PARTICULAR CONCERN TO ME.

I OBVIOUSLY GOT TO, TO, TO FOLKS IN THAT CATEGORY BECAUSE THEY CAN'T GET VACCINATED YET.

BUT I THINK THE THING THAT WE ARE ALL ASKING EVERYBODY TO DO AND THAT WE REALLY WANT TO FOCUS ON, AND THAT WILL MAKE THE GREATEST DIFFERENCE FOR OUR COMMUNITY IS JUST GOING TO GET VACCINATED TODAY, TOMORROW THIS WEEKEND.

THERE'S NO MORE TIME FOR DELAY.

THE ONLY CHANGE IN MASKING THAT COMES ABOUT BY GOING TO THESE THREE, THE PEOPLE WHO ARE MOST VULNERABLE OR AT RISK, UH, ARE NOW BEING RECOMMENDED THAT THEY PUT ON A MASK REGARDLESS.

AND AS DR.

WALKER SAID, IF THERE'S ANYTHING FURTHER TO BE DONE, WE'LL BE TAKING A LOOK AT THAT.

BUT TO JUDGE BROWN'S POINT, THE MOST IMPORTANT THING RIGHT NOW IS FOR PEOPLE TO GET VACCINATED.

OKAY.

A QUESTION FROM K K U T, HAVE YOU SEEN A DECREASE IN THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE GETTING TESTED? IF SO, DOES THAT MEAN THAT WE MIGHT BE UNDERESTIMATING OUR PRESENCE? THE VIRUSES IN THE COMMUNITY, THERE HAS BEEN A DECREASE IN THE NUMBER OF PEOPLE WHO ARE BEING TESTED AND THAT'S LARGELY IMPACTED BY THE FACT THAT THE SYMPTOMS OF COVID-19 A SORE THROAT, RUNNY NOSE, COUGH, UM, HEADACHE, LOSS OF SMELL, TASTE, DIARRHEA.

THOSE ARE THINGS THAT ARE ALSO SYMPTOMS OF OTHER DISEASE, ILLNESS, AND ILLNESS.

SO WE ARE, UM, ASKING PEOPLE TO GO AND BE EVALUATED BY THEIR HEALTHCARE PROFESSIONALS SO THAT THEY CAN BE DIAGNOSED.

AND IF THEY'RE DIAGNOSED WITH, COVID ISOLATE THEMSELVES AT HOME, IN THEIR OWN ROOM WITH THEIR OWN BATHROOM,

[00:50:01]

SO THAT WE CAN CONTAIN THE SPREAD OF THIS ILLNESS, UM, THAT'S, WHAT'S WORKED IN THE PAST AND THAT'S, WHAT'S GOING TO WORK AS WE GO FORWARD.

OKAY.

THANKS.

UH, AND OUR LAST QUESTION HERE IS FROM UNIVISION.

UH, THEY ASK MOVING BACK TO STAGE THREE, YOU ARE ASKING PEOPLE TO VOLUNTARILY MASK UP.

ARE THERE ANY ACTIONS THE COUNTY OR CITY WILL BE TAKING IN THE FUTURE, IMPLEMENT OUR OWN MASKING ORDINANCE.

AT THIS POINT, WE ARE NOT PLANNING TO DO ANYTHING IN ALONG THOSE LINES.

UM, WE ARE COMMITTED TO EVALUATING THE SITUATION.

WE WILL HAVE ONGOING CONVERSATIONS WITH POLICY LEADERS AND MEDICAL LEADERS AND SCHOOL ORDS AND ALL OF THE STAKEHOLDERS TO ASSESS WHERE WE ARE IN THIS PANDEMIC AND WHAT THE NEED IS FOR US TO TAKE ACTION.

THANK YOU, DR.

WACHS, AT THIS POINT, WE WILL GO INTO OUR CLOSING REMARKS, DR.

WACHS, I WOULD LIKE TO THANK OUR COMMUNITY FOR THEIR RESOLVE TO BRING THIS PANDEMIC TO AN END.

AND I WOULD ASK THAT YOU JOIN US NOW, AS WE RECALIBRATE THIS SITUATION, WE'RE ASKING YOU TO, IF YOU'RE VACCINATED, SPEAK TO YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY AND COLLEAGUES AND ASK THEM TO GO AND GET VACCINATED.

THEY'RE, UN-VACCINATED TELL HIM THAT IT'S SAFE, READABLE THE EDUCATION EFFORTS AND LETTING PEOPLE KNOW THAT VACCINES PREVENT SEVERE ILLNESS AND DISEASE AND HOSPITALIZATIONS AND DEATH.

WE NEED YOUR HELP.

WE NEED TO GET THROUGH THIS AUSTIN.

WE HAVE DONE IT BEFORE WE CAN DO IT AGAIN.

WE CAN BRING THE NUMBERS DOWN.

WE CAN PROTECT OUR HOSPITALS SYSTEMS. YOU CAN THANK YOUR MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS BY GOING OUT AND GETTING BACKS, UNAIDED.

THEY ARE TIRED.

THEY'VE BEEN DOING THIS FOR 18 MONTHS.

PLEASE GET VACCINATED.

LET'S DO THIS.

THANK YOU, DR.

WACHS.

UM, DEFINITELY WANT TO GIVE A SHOUT OUT TO OUR MEDICAL PROFESSIONALS, UH, BUT WOULD BE REMISS IF I DID NOT, UH, ACKNOWLEDGE THE WORK OF AUSTIN, PUBLIC HEALTH AND COUNTLESS CITY AND COUNTY EMPLOYEES THAT HAVE BEEN IN THIS FROM THE BEGINNING, PROVIDING BOOTS ON THE GROUND SUPPORT FROM TESTING TO VACCINATION.

AND SO MY HATS OFF TO YOU, UM, I'M PROUD TO SERVE WITH YOU, AND I KNOW THAT WE CAN CONTINUE TO DO THIS TOGETHER.

BEING A REFLECTIVE PERSON EVERY MORNING.

I WAKE UP AND THINK ABOUT WHAT MY LEGACY CAN BE, UM, ON THIS, IN THIS WORLD.

AND IT'S CHANGED AS I'VE EXPERIENCED LIFE AND GROWN OLDER.

AND I THINK MOST OF THE TIME IT'S CENTERED AROUND MY TWO KIDS.

AND WHEN I THINK ABOUT THE IMPACT THAT I CAN HAVE WITH RESPECT TO THE PERSONAL CHOICE THAT I MAKE AROUND COVID VACCINE, CAUSE I'LL BE HONEST.

I WAS ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE.

I WAS DRAGGING MY FEET IN THE BEGINNING, BUT WHEN I THOUGHT ABOUT THIS ONE SMALL ACTION THAT NOT ONLY PROTECTS MYSELF, BUT PROTECTS THE COMMUNITY, WHICH MY KIDS ARE GROWING AND PLAYING.

AND EVERY PERSON THAT'S VACCINATED, NOT ONLY ARE YOU PROTECTING YOURSELF, BUT YOU'RE PROTECTING YOUR LOVED ONES, WE'RE LIMITING THE CHANCE THAT THIS VIRUS HAS TO MUTATE.

AND SO FOR YOURSELF, FOR THE LOVE OF YOUR PARTNER, FOR THE LOVE OF YOUR CHILDREN, FOR THE LOVE OF YOUR BIG MAMA, YEAH, I WILL LET WHOEVER IT MAY BE.

I ENCOURAGE YOU TO TAKE THE SHOT, ANY SHOT J AND J MADONNA PFIZER.

THE DATA SHOWS THAT THEY ARE ALL EFFECTIVE IN PROTECTING US FROM COVID AND PROTECTING US FROM SEVERE DISEASE AND DEATH.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR TIME TODAY.

WE'RE HERE.

IF YOU HAVE ANY QUESTIONS, BREAKFAST, STIRRUP, UH, AND DR.

DR.

WACHS AGAIN, THANK YOU.

AND YOUR STAFFS FOR WHAT YOU'RE DOING.

UH, THE TRAVIS COUNTY, UH, JUDGE AND HEALTH OFFICIALS, THEY'RE THE CONSTABLE, UH, ACHIEVE, UH, THERE IS, UH, IS, UH, SO MANY

[00:55:01]

PEOPLE WORKING SO HARD, UH, TO TRY AND KEEP THE COMMUNITY SAFE.

AND, AND I WANT TO MAKE SURE THAT WE'RE, THAT WE'RE THINKING ALL OF THEM, BUT BOTTOM LINE WE'RE HERE TODAY BECAUSE WE'RE SEEING NOW A SERIOUS UPTICK OF PEOPLE IN OUR HOSPITALS AND PEOPLE IN OUR ICU'S THAT HAVE COVID.

THAT'S WHY WE'RE HERE, WE'RE HERE BECAUSE ALMOST ALL OF THOSE PEOPLE ARE NOT ACTIVATED THE EARLY INDICATIONS, UH, OF WHAT WE'RE SEEING NOW COULD DEVELOP INTO A REALLY SERIOUS CHALLENGE FOR OUR HEALTH SYSTEM AS ALL.

AND THAT'S WHY WE'RE HERE.

BUT AS A COMMUNITY, WE CAN CONTROL THIS.

WE NEED PEOPLE TO REALLY CONSIDER IF YOU'RE NOT VACCINATED, GETTING BACK SEDATED, UH, LOOK AT THE EVIDENCE, LOOK AT THE DATA, LOOK AT THE MILLIONS OF PEOPLE THAT HAVE ADDED, KNOW THE NUMBERS THAT WE'RE SEEING IN OUR COMMUNITY, WHERE ALMOST, ALMOST ALL THE PEOPLE BEING HOSPITALIZED IN ICU'S ARE NOT VACCINATED, UH, AND, AND RECOGNIZE THAT AS THE NUMBERS GO UP AND OUR HOSPITAL ISN'T IN OUR ICU, THERE'S A CHALLENGE THAT'S PRESENTED TO THE OVERALL HEALTHCARE SYSTEM.

UH, MAINTAINING SPACES AND HOSPITALS IN ICU IS, IS IMPORTANT FOR REASONS THAT GO BEYOND, BEYOND COVID, UH, SO THAT THERE ARE BEDS FOR PEOPLE HAVING HEART ATTACKS ARE INVOLVED IN AUTOMOBILE ACCIDENTS.

THERE'S SOMETHING THAT WE CAN ALL DO.

IF YOU'RE NOT VACCINATED, PLEASE GET VACCINATED.

IF YOU ARE VACCINATED, PLEASE MAKE SURE THAT ALL YOUR FRIENDS AND FAMILY THAT ARE NOT, UH, GET, GET VACCINATED.

WE'RE STILL AT A PLACE WHERE WE CAN CONTROL THIS.

UH, AND THAT'S WHAT WE'RE ASKING THE COMMUNITY TO BE ON HEIGHTENED ALERT.

I AM REALLY ENJOYING GOING BACK TO A LIFE THAT IS MORE OPEN AND MORE FREE, AND IT LOOKS MORE LIKE THE KIND OF LIFE WE HAD BEFORE, BUT KNOW THAT OUR ABILITY TO DO THAT IS PRECARIOUS.

UH, AND, AND WE NEED TO HOLD ON TO IT, UH, WORK TO HOLD ONTO IT, IF WE'RE GOING TO KEEP IT.

AND FINALLY, I REPEAT WHAT I SAID BEFORE.

WE CANNOT BE, CANNOT PRETEND TO BE DONE WITH A VIRUS THAT IS NOT DONE WITH US, JUDGE.

YEAH.

I AGREE WITH WHAT EVERYONE SAID.

GET VACCINATED.

THINK ABOUT IF YOU'RE NOT VACCINATED OR MORE LIKELY.

IF YOU HAVE A FRIEND OR A FAMILY MEMBER, WHO'S NOT MAKE A PLAN FOR TODAY OR THIS WEEKEND TO GET VACCINATED, YOU CAN GO TONIGHT TO ANY, I THINK ANY JDS SUPERMARKET FROM FIVE 30 TO EIGHT 30 THIS WEEKEND AT THE EXPO CENTER FROM 9:00 AM TO 5:00 PM, BOTH SATURDAY AND SUNDAY, JUST MAKE A PLAN, PUT IT ON YOUR CALENDAR.

AND THAT WILL MAKE ALL THE DIFFERENCE IN THE WORLD IF EVERYBODY, UH, DOES THAT THIS WEEKEND.

THANK YOU.

THAT CONCLUDES OUR MEDIA AVAILABILITY FOR TODAY.

THANK YOU TO TRAVIS COUNTY.

JUDGE ANDY BROWN, CITY OF AUSTIN, MAYOR STEVE ADLER, INTERIM APH DIRECTOR, ADRIAN STIRRUP AND AUSTIN, TRAVIS COUNTY HEALTH AUTHORITY, DR.

DESMO WALKS.

AND SO OUR POOL REPORTER AUSTIN SANDERS FROM THE AUSTIN CHRONICLE.

THANK YOU AGAIN FOR JOINING US.

PLEASE HAVE A SAFE DAY.



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