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Bell County, surrounding areas forced to rollback reopenings after exceeding COVID-19 hospitalization limit

TSA L added to state's list of high hospitalization areas
Posted at 4:37 PM, Jan 05, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-05 17:56:16-05

BELL COUNTY, TX — Bell County and surrounding counties must close bars, limit business capacity to 50% and cancel elective surgeries after exceeding the state's COVID-19 hospitalization limit.

On Wednesday, October 7, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott issued executive order GA-32, which allowed certain venues to reopen to 75% capacity and allowed the resumption of elective surgeries in certain counties. Counties that reside in Trauma Service Areas (TSAs) with high COVID‑19 hospitalizations are excluded from these reopenings.

According to the governor, any Trauma Service Area (TSA) that has had seven consecutive days in which the number of COVID-19 hospitalized patients as a percentage of total hospital capacity exceeds 15 percent is considered high hospitalization, meaning they must limit capacity, close bars and stop elective surgeries.

On Tuesday, the Texas Department of State Health Services added Trauma Service Area L to its list of high hospitalization areas. A letter was also sent to county judges informing them of the rollbacks.

Below is the letter issued to Bell County Judge David Blackburn.

Counties in TSA L include:

  • Bell
  • Coryell
  • Hamilton
  • Lampasas
  • Milam
  • Mills

Counties in high hospitalizations can choose to operate at 75% capacity if:

  • the county has fewer than 30 cases reported over the last 14 days, and
  • the county judge submits an attestation to DSHS

To view current hospitalizations, click here.