‘The State of Texas is urging federal government to step up in this fight’

Governor Abbott, TDEM, DSHS request federally-supported Covid-19 resources

AUSTIN, Texas – On Friday, Dec. 31, Governor Greg Abbott announced that the State of Texas has requested resources for federally-supported testing locations and medical personnel. Texas has also requested additional federal allocations of monoclonal antibodies. These requests were done through the Texas Division of Emergency Management (TDEM) and the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS).

“Detecting COVID-19 and preventing COVID-related hospitalizations are critical to our fight against this virus,” said Governor Abbott. “While the Biden administration has cut supplies of monoclonal antibody treatments and testing kits when they are needed most, the State of Texas is urging the federal government to step up in this fight and provide the resources necessary to help protect Texans. Testing sites, additional medical staff, and continued shipments of therapeutics from the federal government will help us continue to save lives and mitigate the spread of COVID-19.”

The state also requested support from the Federal Emergency Management Agency for testing sites based on current Covid-19 metrics, including positivity rate and hospitalization.

Texas requested support for the following counties:

  • Bexar,
  • Cameron,
  • Dallas,
  • Harris,
  • Hidalgo
  • and Tarrant

The additional testing capability will help in identifying people with Covid-19, including the Omicron variant. It will also help prevent and reduce further transmission.

DSHS also requested additional allocations of sotrovimab, a monoclonal antibody therapeutic. Sotrovimab is an effective and proven measure in fighting the Omicron variant of Covid-19 and reducing hospitalizations. The agency also asked the federal government to continue to supply the State of Texas with Regeneron and bamlanivimab. Both are monoclonal antibody treatments for other strains of Covid-19 that have also proven to help reduce hospitalizations across the state. DSHS requested three teams of medical personnel, as well. These teams will provide additional support to hospitals in urban areas throughout Texas that do not have DSHS-contracted staff.