WATCH: City leaders still encourage masks, social distancing after Texas lifts mask mandate

City of Lubbock COVID-19 news conference 03/10/2021 - clipped version

LUBBOCK, Texas (KCBD) - The state mask mandate may be gone, but Lubbock city leaders are still urging citizens to take proper precautions against COVID-19.

In the last week, Lubbock’s total positive cases averaged nearly 12 per day. Lubbock Health Authority Dr. Ron Cook called that a significantly low number. COVID hospitalizations also remain low. Still, Dr. Cook said people should not let their guard down.

“This virus is still out there,” Dr. Cook said. “It is still causing death and significant illness and long-term illnesses. Let’s continue to do our part in wearing our masks and socially distancing and washing our hands.”

Gov. Greg Abbott’s Executive Order GA-34 is now in effect, allowing businesses to open at full capacity and lifting the statewide mask mandate. Municipal leaders said they trust citizens to stay safe.

“I have complete confidence in our community to do the right thing, to care about other people and to care about themselves and not spread the virus,” Dr. Cook said.

Mayor Dan Pope echoed the same sentiment.

“We know what keeps us safe,” Pope said. “These are individual decisions. We don’t need the government telling us this.”

The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is available at both Covenant Medical Center and UMC, according to the Department of State Health Services, as well as some smaller clinics across Lubbock. It is still not widely available yet. The J&J shot only requires one dose rather than two.

“The Johnson & Johnson vaccine is about 67% effective. The Moderna and the Pfizer are 90 to 95% effective. So, all of them are very effective,” Dr. Cook said.

The city still has vaccine appointments available this week.Teachers, school staff and daycare workers are now eligible to get inoculated.

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