10/6/2020 – Fort Bend County Updated COVID-19 Health Guidance for the Public
During an outbreak, the risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, may vary from very high to relatively lower risk. The level of risk depends in part on the environment, type of activity performed, and the potential for close contact (within 6 feet of another person) for a repeated or extended period. To help Residents determine appropriate precautions, Fort Bend County has adopted four color levels to characterize the different risk exposure levels, consisting of high, moderate-low, and new normal.
While daily activities are gradually returning to normal levels, we are entering an entirely different environment that places novel responsibilities upon each of us. We continue to monitor positive cases in our County and Region. Our hospital systems continue to stay vigilant as they coordinate with Texas Medical Center in Houston. COVID-19 testing continues to be a cornerstone of understanding the spread of this disease in our community.
Please find attached a document designed to offer guidance to our communities as we navigate the new reality of life during the COVID-19 pandemic. Such personal accountability remains one of our most effective tools in the ongoing siege against the novel coronavirus.
With the effects of Governor Abbott’s statewide mask order and Governor Abbott’s prohibition on mass gatherings showing positive results, we are at this time, in the yellow “low/moderate risk” category moving from the orange “moderate/significant risk” category. While the signs look good, teachers are heading back into in-person education, and nursing homes have relaxed rules for visitation – this is not the time to let our guards down. Continue to wear masks, physically distance, and assess your risk to ensure we keep moving in the right direction. We must continue to be smart & safe.
Local medical professionals compiled the enclosed guidance in pursuit of their lone goal of containment of COVID-19 in Fort Bend County. Please read the recommendations not as an infringement upon personal liberty, but as acts of solidarity that will protect the livelihoods of your loved ones, neighbors, and the local health professionals who endeavor each day to care for us. By adhering to these suggestions, we can solidify the progress we have made thus far and hasten our return to the life that we love – one of safety, wellbeing, community, and camaraderie.
Fort Bend County Judge
Fort Bend County COVID-19 Health Guidance for the Public
Assume personal responsibility – Public health guidance cannot anticipate every unique situation. Residents should take responsibility, stay informed, take actions based on common sense, and follow the guidance offered by health care experts.
Do an honest self-assessment – In addition, all individuals are encouraged to perform an honest self-assessment before engaging in activities outside of the home. This assessment should include asking two questions:
Am I healthy enough to leave the home, or do I fall into a high-risk category, based on age or other medical conditions?
Is there someone in my home, or someone I interact with on a regular basis, who falls into a high-risk category?
If the answer to either of these questions is yes, then exercise extra caution and discretion before leaving the home. Is it a want or is it a need?
Perform protective hygiene, distance yourself physically, and clean the environment – Fort Bend County residents should practice good hygiene and cleaning practices to minimize the risk of transmission of the virus. These include but are not limited to the following:
Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds as frequently as possible or use hand sanitizer after interactions with people or objects
Stay home if ill
Cover coughs or sneezes with a tissue or do it into the sleeve or elbow, not hands
Clean high-touch surfaces (buttons, door handles, counters, etc.) regularly
Avoid touching your face
Refrain from handshaking
Physically distance and keep the recommended distance between people outside of your household
Wear a facial covering when out in public or when in the company of others.
Assess the Risk – Individuals should assess their risk and make decisions based on their specific circumstances. Those at high risk for COVID-19 (elderly, those with underlying illnesses, etc.) and those around them should use extra precautions as outlined by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS), and Fort Bend County Health and Human Services (FBCHHS).