As of 12:00 AM on June 15, 2023, Governor Greg Abbott’s COVID-19 disaster declaration has expired, officially marking the end of COVID-19’s status as a disaster in Texas after 1,189 days.
While we wish that this marks the “end” of COVID-19, it does not. Rather, the end of the disaster status indicates that COVID-19 has reached a stage where it can be managed through routine healthcare resources, and that Emergency Protective Measures (EPM) are no longer necessary.
Blanco County Response
Blanco County reacted quickly as COVID-19 emerged, with a strike team quickly being formed which comprised of County and City officials, Emergency Services, local healthcare entities, schools, and many more. This team quickly adapted to the emerging needs of our community and employed the public health disaster strategies we had been practicing for years.
The first area we assisted in was COVID-19 testing. We quickly developed and implemented a COVID-19 testing process to ensure that every member of our community had access to free COVID-19 testing. Throughout the public health emergency, we processed a total of 7,268 COVID-19 Test registrations. Ultimately, we completed a total of 5,069 COVID-19 tests, and our peak testing volume was 492 tests in a week.
The second area we assisted in was COVID-19 vaccinations. Again, we quickly developed and implemented mass COVID-19 Vaccination sites. Throughout the public health emergency, we processed a total of 14,976 COVID Vaccine registrations. Ultimately, we administered a total of 7,228 vaccinations, including 2896 first doses, 2851 second doses, and 1481 booster doses.
The last major area we assisted in COVID-19 was our COVID-19 Hotline/Call Center. We quickly developed and implemented a COVID-19 Call Center dedicated to Blanco County. This hotline provided access to all sorts of COVID-19 information and resources, handled general COVID-19 questions and assisted citizens with COVID-19 Testing and Vaccine registrations and appointments. Additionally, since the hotline opened, it provided 24/7 access to healthcare professionals through an on-call rotation, so that citizens with COVID-19 Clinical Questions could reach someone anytime, day or night. Throughout the PHE, our call center handled 7,111 phone calls as well as 3,047 e-mail tickets.
Between all of these areas, we handled over 32,000 interactions with citizens.
There is now widespread access to COVID-19 Vaccines and COVID-19 Testing, so it is no longer necessary or efficient to continue operating our COVID-19 Vaccine and COVID-19 Testing centers.
Find COVID-19 Vaccines
Go to vaccines.gov to find COVID-19 vaccines near you.
Getting a COVID-19 Test
Buy self-tests (at-home tests)
Buy self-tests (at-home tests) online or in pharmacies and retail stores. Private health insurance may reimburse the cost of purchasing self-tests. Visit FDA’s website for a list of authorized tests. Self-tests are antigen tests.
Go to a testing location
– Visit a community-based testing location, such as a pharmacy or health center near you. These locations may offer PCR or antigen tests, and provide low- or no-cost testing for everyone, including people without insurance. Free PCR or antigen tests may also be available through your local health department.
– Talk to a doctor or healthcare provider about other testing options that may be available to you.
– If you are a person with a disability, the Disability Information and Access Line can help you access a test or find a test location.
COVID-19 Vaccine Records
All COVID-19 Vaccines administered through our COVID-19 vaccine center were reported to the Texas Department of State Health Services through ImmTrac.
If you completed a consent form, your records will be retained in ImmTrac indefinitely. If you did not complete a consent form, your records will be retained in ImmTrac for 5 years (until June 15th, 2028).
If you need to get a copy of your vaccine record, please follow these steps:
- Go to https://www.dshs.texas.gov/immunize/immtrac/clients.shtm
- Click on “Request an Immunization Record” link.
- Download and complete the form.
- Send completed form to the DSHS Immunization Unit address listed on the website.
- Additional information is available on the website or call Toll-Free at 1-866-624-0180.
COVID-19 Testing Records
North Blanco County EMS will remain the custodian of records for COVID-19 Tests performed through our testing center, and will be retained in accordance with standard record retention policies for healthcare records (typically 7 years). If you are in need of a record of a COVID-19 Test performed by our testing center, please contact them for assistance at: firstname.lastname@example.org
It has been our honor to serve the community throughout the COVID-19 Disaster. One great thing that came about during the COVID-19 disaster was the establishment of the Blanco County Community Health Paramedic (CHP) program. If you require further assistance relating to COVID-19, please contact the Blanco County CHP program, who will gladly assist you!
Blanco County CHP Program
Office: (830) 984-4100
Fax: (830) 984-4150