San Antonio health experts warn residents not to be complacent, not panic because of COVID-19 surge

Some residents have differing opinions as far as the importance of testing during second peak

Health officials are weighing in on the surge in COVID-19 cases and influx of people rushing to get testing.

San Antonio – Health experts are weighing in on the surge of COVID-19 cases and influx of people rushing to get testing. 

Officials say while it is good to take the virus seriously, people need to avoid panicking and continue to practice recommended guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Some people innately worry about a lot of stuff,” said Dr. Harry Croft, a psychiatrist. “Some people don’t worry enough, and some people take the head in the sand approach and don’t do anything.”

Croft said those three approaches are not the answer to fighting rising coronavirus case numbers. He said those numbers might cause panic to some, which is why the lines for testing have increased over time.

“If you don’t have symptoms, if you haven’t been exposed, and if you are not worried about directly exposing somebody that might be vulnerable, then it is probably not necessary to rush out and get a test,” Croft said.

Dr. Mandie Tibball-Svatek, with UT Health San Antonio, agrees with Croft, saying getting tested without symptoms, exposure or concern about vulnerable family members may fill up test slots for those who need it.

“Even if you had a negative test, that doesn’t mean tomorrow you are not going to get it. Those individuals who are symptomatic really need to confirm that that test is positive, that they have that opportunity to test,” Svatek said. “You’ve got to remember that they are out there too, and if you are out there, you are potentially exposing yourself.”

Croft and Svatek said the best thing you can do during this surge is to follow CDC guidelines strictly, just as people did at the beginning of the pandemic.

“Remember where you were a month ago,” Svatek said. “Remember the positive things you were doing. It is tough being at home, but we need to get those rates down. We need to do the right thing for our community.”

The guidelines include the following:

  • Social distancing
  • Limiting the number of people in your gatherings
  • Wearing a mask
  • Washing your hands
  • Staying home until you can get tested

About the Authors:

Japhanie Gray joined 10 News as an anchor in March 2022.

Before starting at KSAT in August 2011, Ken was a news photographer at KENS. Before that he was a news photographer at KVDA TV in San Antonio. Ken graduated from San Antonio College with an associate's degree in Radio, TV and Film. Ken has won a Sun Coast Emmy and four Lone Star Emmys. Ken has been in the TV industry since 1994.