Doctor: New cases of COVID will not cause another shutdown; patients linked to large gathering.


Dr. Kelly Doggett

By SARA VANDEN BERGE


There have been 10 new cases of COVID-19 in Erath County this week.


Dr. Kelly Doggett, Stephenville’s health authority, said several of those new cases are linked to either a large gathering, or working at or visiting a recently reopened business that involves one-on-one interaction in close proximity.


“If Erath County and Texas are going to safely reopen, we must remain vigilant and continue social distancing and continue to wash and sanitize our hands,” Dr. Doggett said. “The governor’s report to reopen Texas asks us to stay home when possible and if we must go out, wear a cloth face mask or covering and stay six feet away from others.”


Doggett said that even with the new cases, he does not believe there will be another shutdown in Erath County anytime soon.

“There are several criteria that must be met, one of which is more than three positive cases per 1,000 residents which would be around 130 cases for Erath,” he said. “I’ve seen a marked decrease in social distancing over the last two weeks and this concerns me.

“The main tool we have until an effective vaccine or treatment is to practice social distancing and recommended sanitation procedures.

“Common sense measures such as taking care of your body, boosting your immune system and maintaining a positive attitude and keeping stress levels low may help as well. Every little bit helps.”