WF City Council talk COVID-19 preparedness

City leaders talk about COVID-19 planning and prep

WICHITA FALLS, Texas (TNN) - While not on the agenda, Wichita Falls City leaders were ready for an update from the health department about COVID-19.

With no confirmed cases in Wichita Falls, City leaders say they have taken no major action but stand prepared.

“We have a set of protocols before we see a case. And we’re gonna have a set of protocols after we see a case. Right now, we’re just holding pattern we talk daily when citizens know that, you know, the daily communication with Shephard, MSU, Vernon college, these are all people that we talked to today, the health department," said

“At this time, city is not forcing businesses to close their doors, but some business owners are doing so anyway,” said WF Mayor Stephen Santellana , “and that we’re all kind of reflecting each other in the sense that if one person’s gonna be closing, maybe we should all be closing."

As for health officials, they are now able to test more people through private labs.

“Late last week, there were two laboratories national laboratories that opened up testing in what we call a private lab,” said Amy Fagan Assistant Director of Health, Wichita County Public Health District.

Fagan warns results may take little longer and when they do come in they have to be reported to the health department.

“So if there’s a delay in reporting, it’s just because those labs, there’s a delay in those labs. But when we’ve used the department states services lab, we receive results, same day or next day first,” Fagan said.

Responders say they’ll be prepared when they get the call.

“Of course, we already have contingency plans in place," said WF Chief Manuel Borrego. "We’re just trying to make sure that we’re massaging them and looking at them and making sure that they’re going to work because really Our concern would be that should we be affected by it? We need to make sure that we can still run our communication center so the public will have access to calling in if they need if they need us.”

“There are some special things that have been put into dispatch where dispatches are, asking certain questions now to kind of help us to understand, possibly have a case on the scene,” said Assistant Fire Chief Hughes.

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