EL PASO, Texas (KTSM) — Texas Gov. Greg Abbott said during a news conference in Lubbock on Thursday afternoon that El Paso will be among the first cities in Texas to receive the latest COVID-19 antibody treatment.
“Our most immediate goal is to reduce the lack of capacity at hospitals and as a result, Lubbock, the Amarillo area, the Midland area, the El Paso area, all fall within the zones where we are working to focus on and to make sure they will be receiving as much as possible,” Abbott said.
The treatment from Eli Lilly will be given to COVID-19 patients who are considered vulnerable, such as those with underlying conditions. However, for the treatment to be most effective, it needs to be administered in the early stages of COVID.
Abbott also mentioned during the conference that there will not be a statewide shutdown and addressed the current lawsuit against El Paso County Judge Ricardo Samaniego over his shutdown order.
The governor said there are ways to keep businesses open while protecting people against the virus. According to Abbott, cities need to enforce the protocols in place by the state.
“I talked to the County Judge in El Paso and I said, ‘you need to enforce the protocols.’” And he said he couldn’t or didn’t feel like he could just because of the challenging complication of it and what that means is some local officials aren’t using the tools available to them.”
As KTSM 9 News previously reported, last week the 8th Court of Appeals halted the county judge’s order to shutdown non-essential businesses.
Samaniego has said he is reviewing his legal options.