As America responds to confirmed cases of coronavirus (COVID-19), I wanted to share the most comprehensive, up-to-date safety information for our community.
The CDC has a 24-hour hotline for COVID-19 related questions at 1-800-232-4636.
Constituents can now get to CDC’s home page on the coronavirus, simply by going to coronavirus.gov. Additional information can be found below.
NEW CDC INFORMATION ON STATE AND LOCAL PUBLIC HEALTH OFFICIALS: CDC points out that state and local public health authorities are on the front lines of the response to COVID-19 and often have the most up-to-date and detailed information on cases in their jurisdictions. State and local public health officials are often the experts best positioned to inform your constituents about the COVID-19 response in your state or locality.
STEPS TO KEEP AMERICANS SAFE FROM CORONAVIRUS: CDC has published a new, excellent document that provides:
- Steps to keep workplaces safe from coronavirus
- Steps to keep schools safe from coronavirus
- Steps to keep your home safe from coronavirus
- Steps to keep commercial establishments safe from coronavirus
ADDITIONAL GUIDANCE FOR OLDER AMERICANS AND/OR THOSE WITH SERIOUS MEDICAL CONDITIONS: In addition to the CDC guidance for all Americans on how to prevent the spread of coronavirus (such as hand washing, etc.), the CDC has now published additional guidance for older Americans and/or those who have serious chronic medical conditions – the individuals who are at higher risk of getting very sick from coronavirus. For those at higher risk of serious illness, the additional guidance includes:
- Stock up on supplies
- Take everyday precautions to keep space between yourself and others.
- When you go out in public, keep away from others who are sick, limit close contact and wash your hands often.
- Avoid crowds as much as possible.
- Avoid cruise travel and non-essential air travel.
- During a COVID-19 outbreak in your community, stay home as much as possible to further reduce your risk of being exposed.
NEW CDC GUIDANCE ON STRATEGIES TO PREVENT THE SPREAD OF CORONAVIRUS IN NURSING HOMES: CDC recommends such steps as limiting visitors, aggressive disinfecting of facility, and closely monitoring residents with symptoms of respiratory infection.
TRAVEL RESRICTIONS: The government determined that the potential for widespread transmission of the coronavirus by infected individuals seeking to enter the United States threatens the security of the homeland. Travel restrictions now apply.
I AM STRANDED ABROAD. WHAT DO I DO?
Congressman Gonzalez is actively working on solutions for constituents stranded in different countries around the world. The Coronavirus pandemic brings a number of challenges when dealing with foreign countries, however, Congressman Cuellar is committed to bringing all constituents safely back home. If you or a loved one is stranded abroad, please see the information below:
An individual stranded abroad should email their name, date of birth, passport numbers, location and contact info to the public e-mail address of their closest embassy or consulate. To find the closest embassy or consulate, click here.
Travelers are encouraged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) at step.state.gov. STEP provides updates from the State Department and helps the nearest embassy or consulate make contact with the traveler.
If you are concerned about a loved one overseas, please call:
- From the U.S. & Canada - 1-888-407-4747
- From Overseas - +1 202-501-4444
NEW CDC GUIDANCE ON CRUISE SHIP TRAVEL: CDC recommends travelers, particularly those with underlying health issues, defer all cruise ship travel worldwide. Cruise ship passengers are at increased risk of person-to-person spread of infectious diseases, including COVID-19.
NEW CDC INFOGRAPHICS ON CORONAVIRUS
Infographic on the Symptoms of Coronavirus (In English, Spanish, and Chinese)
Infographic on Preventing the Spread of Coronavirus (In English, Spanish, and Chinese)
More on Coronavirus (COVID-19)
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) and Members of the Texas Congressional Delegation urged Governor Greg Abbott to take additional steps to allow cities and counties to institute enforceable stay-at-home orders at their discretion. Governor Abbott has pursued one of the most aggressive economic reopening strategies in the United States that has resulted in skyrocketing COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations in Texas.
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressmen Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) and Filemon Vela (TX-34) urged Governor Greg Abbott to immediately assign National Guard forces to the Rio Grande Valley (RGV) to address the spiraling COVID-19 crisis in the region.
Demand for intensive care unit (ICU) beds has surpassed capacity in counties on the U.S.-Mexico border. Lacking space for COVID-19 patients in ICUs, emergency rooms across the Lower Rio Grande Valley are forced to continue to care for those who need intensive treatment even as new patients arrive at higher and higher rates.
WASHINGTON– Today, Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) and Members of the Texas Congressional Delegation called on Governor Greg Abbott to reinstate tougher COVID-19 safety measures. Rising case counts have hospitals nearing intensive care unit (ICU) capacity as Texas pursues one of the most aggressive economic reopening strategies in the nation.
WASHINGTON – Today, Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) lauded the passage and signing of a bipartisan bill into law to deliver further relief for small businesses in the 15th District of Texas. H.R. 7010, The Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act makes key fixes to the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) to assist small business owners in South Texas and across the country who are struggling the most as a result of the coronavirus.
MCALLEN, Texas – Today, Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) announced a U.S. Department of Health and Human Service federal grant of $95,455 for the University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) Area Health Education Centers Program to combat COVID-19.
This grant will help UTRGV expand its capacity to provide services for those affected by COVID-19 and additional health care for rural communities.
MCALLEN, Texas – Today, Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) announced the location of a mobile COVID-19 testing site in Hidalgo County in the 15th District of Texas. Testing begins Wednesday, June 3.
WASHINGTON – Congressman Vicente Gonzalez (TX-15) and 52 bipartisan members of Congress called on U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar to include senior living communities in future distributions of CARES Act coronavirus relief funding.