Easter celebrations have Austin-Travis County health officials worried about COVID-19 spread

Austin

AUSTIN (KXAN) — Before you hop to an Easter celebration, Austin Public Health is warning about a potential rise in COVID-19 infections as a result of holiday gatherings.

So far, APH says it hasn’t seen a spike but leaders are still concerned since cases are on the rise in 31 states.

APH Interim Authority Dr. Mark Escott said he’s worried about Easter celebrations and the days leading up to it.

“I know this is a time to celebrate this week. Holy Thursday, Good Friday, Holy Saturday, Easter Sunday. It’s a thing. And it is a time to get together with family. It’s a time to gather together with your church community. We have to be very careful, particularly in our Hispanic communities, because it could light a fire,” said Escott. “And I don’t want that to happen.”

Austin Public Health is opening more vaccine appointments Thursday. They’re following the state’s directive to vaccinate people ages 80 and older regardless of whether they have an appointment.

But APH is asking people in that age group to call 3-1-1 so they can schedule an appointment for a smoother process.

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