Texas Governor Greg Abbott delivered encouraging words for restaurants, hospitals and nursing on Thursday.
As a part of the state's Reopen Texas plan, regions with hospitalizations less than 15% can increase operating capacity to 75% as soon as Monday, Sept. 21.
East Texas is currently under the 15% mark, which means restaurants, retail establishments, museums, libraries and gyms/health clubs can soon increase their capacities from 50 to 75%.
For hospitals that are under the 15% rate, elective surgeries and procedures can, once again, take place.
Beginning on Thursday, Sept. 24, nursing homes, assisted living centers, and long-term care facilities will be allowed to reopen for visitation, as long as COVID-19 policies are in place.
Abbott said at this time bars and wine tasting rooms will remain closed throughout the state.
As of Thursday, only three regions in the state (Rio Grande, Laredo and Victoria) are over the 15% mark.
“That level of hospitalization shows COVID is spreading too much for those regions to expand their openings,” Abbott said. “The other 19 regions are able to open at the expanded capacity announced today.”