Stay-at-home order extended, second Houston COVID-19 testing site announced

Mayor Sylvester Turner, standing alongside Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo, announced the Harris County Stay Home, Work Safe order set to expire on Friday, April 3, is now extended through April 30, 2020.

  • Essential businesses can remain open. The Stay Home, Work Safe Order exempts essential workers covered in 16 CISA categories. The list of critical businesses can be found here.
  • Individuals are advised to stay home unless they need to leave their residence to perform “Essential Activities.”

“The singular goal is worth repeating, and that is to blunt the progression of the COVID-19 so that we do not overwhelm our health care system,” Mayor Turner said. “We know that April 30 may seem a long way off. But if we work together, we can emerge from this health care crisis much quicker and stronger.”

Texas Medical Center leaders have endorsed the Stay Home, Work Safe order extension. In a letter, ten CEOs said the order would help prevent hospitals from being overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients.

COVID-19 Testing Capacity Doubles 

Beginning April 1, 2020, the City of Houston will operate two free COVID-19 testing sites. The new site will double the testing capacity to 500 people a day.

The community sites only accept people with the identification code obtained through the screening process. People showing up at the test sites without an identification code will not get tested.

Call either 832-393-4220 or go to houstonemergency.org/covid19 for an online screening tool.

As of March 31, 2020, 377 people have tested positive for COVID-19, and four patients have died from the virus in the City of Houston. The virus has also affected City of Houston employees; eight firefighters, 12 police officers, and 18 municipal workers have tested positive.

“Opening a second testing site to double our testing capacity is critically important for the City of Houston. We must test people who are sick and have underlying health conditions,” Mayor Turner said. “We need robust testing as we work to blunt the progression of COVID-19.”

Houstonians may visit HoustonEmergency.org/covid19 for updated information about local risk, routine protective actions, frequently asked questions, communication resources, rumor control, emergency preparedness tips and more.