Pelosi and McConnell receive Covid vaccine as shots are reserved for senior U.S. officials
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell received Pfizer's Covid vaccine on Friday after the attending physician in Congress urged lawmakers to sign up. Senior U.S. government officials have already started to receive the vaccine, with Vice President Mike Pence, his wife, Karen, and Surgeon General Jerome Adams getting the shot live on national television Friday morning. The general public, however, is not expected to receive the vaccine for months as doses remain limited while Pfizer ramps up production. Congress is currently negotiating a Covid relief package that is expected to provide several billion dollars for vaccine distribution. "My recommendation to you is absolutely unequivocal: there is no reason why you should defer receiving this vaccine," Monahan told Congress in a letter Thursday.cnbc.com
The Latest: Key US senators test positive for virus
North Carolina Sen. Thom Tillis and Utah Sen. Mike Lee both said Friday that they had tested positive for the virus. Michelle Lujan Grisham is taking a cautious approach to lifting health restrictions and reopening the economy. Parson and his wife, Teresa, tested positive on Sept. 23. Wim Rungwattanachinda said Thaksin tested positive again when he went to a hospital, and he was treated for about two weeks before being released. ___DES MOINES — Iowa posted more than 1,000 new confirmed coronavirus cases for the third consecutive day.
A warning about how the COVID-19 Slide is impacting students now and in the future
The academic decline that takes place when kids are on summer break, known as the Summer Slide, has now turned into the COVID-19 Slide. And, he’s seeing elementary and middle school students struggling the most, since they are in the process of learning new skills. James believes education leaders know that this COVID-19 Slide is and will be a problem ahead. “There’s just a lot of risk to just kind of get by on the homework, but they’re not learning anything. James said because of social distancing, tutoring facilities have had to limit the number of students they see at their facilities.
San Antonio bars reinvent themselves with plans to reopen
San Antonio – The Texas Alcoholic Beverage Commission has been making changes to the requirements necessary to receive a Food and Beverage Certificate to help more bar owners meet those requirements. Bar owners like Tony Keogh, of Main Street Bar, is adapting to keep their businesses alive. The latest TABC amendment eliminates the need for the business to have a commercial kitchen. The certificate from TABC to be able to reopen will cost about $800, money Keogh says he really cannot afford. Related: Emergency TABC amendment relaxes requirements for Texas bars to reopen as restaurants
Special city team begins crackdown on restaurants violating orders starting Thursday night
SAN ANTONIO – A special team led by San Antonio Code Enforcement will be monitoring bars and restaurants across the city on Thursday night. City of San Antonio Development Services Director Michael Shannon said the team was assembled due to issues brought to light by violations at The Well bar on the Northwest Side over the weekend. And we need to really go out and find those.”Recently, changes by the state allowed some bars to reopen as restaurants with a special certificate. Since March, according to online city data, of the roughly 90 encounters where citations were issued, 17 involved a restaurant or bar. A spokesperson says the sheriff’s office’s efforts are to inform businesses about the requirements made by the city and county.
More rural COVID-19 patients being medevacked to San Antonio-area hospitals
San Antonio – Medevac crews are staying busy transferring COVID-19 patients from rural hospitals to San Antonio-area hospitals. AirLIFE crews reports 72 transfers of known or suspected COVID-19 patients since March to San Antonio, Kerrville, Pleasanton and Uvalde bases. “I’d say probably about a third of our calls now are COVID-19 patients,” Ramirez said. “We typically see the sickest of the patients,” Ramirez said. None of the flight crews directly working with positive COVID-19 patients have contracted the virus.
Small private school owner tries to find silver lining despite lower enrollment amid pandemic
San Antonio – Small private schools say the pandemic is hurting their bottom line as more parents choose to hold off on sending their kids to classes in person, but some advantages are helping them stay afloat. What we know about reopening schools in San Antonio right nowKatia Edrenkina, the founder of the International School of San Antonio. The school has the potential to serve up to 14 students, but because of the pandemic, many parents are holding off, Edrenkina said. “I know the other family, so I feel comfortable sending him, even if I know he might be exposed to [the virus],” Pineda said. Yeah, I’m just comfortable with it.”The school program operates as a small learning pod.
Air quality improves with less cars on the road amid COVID-19 pandemic
San Antonio – The pandemic has led to improved air quality in San Antonio, according to data and evidence analyzed by local experts. University of Texas at San Antonio professor Afamia Elnakat, with the Department of Environmental Science and Ecology, looked at the data from the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality from two different locations in San Antonio from the start of the year to now. That continues through out until today, and that drop could be attributed to less vehicles on the road,” she explained. Allergist and Immunology Dr. Erika Gonzalez with South Texas Allergy & Asthma Medical Professionals said her patients saw improvements in their health during the pandemic. Since people started staying home at the peak of oak allergy season, patients saw improvements.
It could be weeks before COVID-19 plateau is confirmed, San Antonio officials say
San Antonio – It will take weeks before San Antonio Metro Health officials know whether or not there’s been a plateau in the spread COVID-19 cases in Bexar County. Bexar County surpasses 15,000 COVID-19 casesThe city has also made the decision to only test people who are showing symptoms at the city run testing locations. There are still more than 50 testing locations in the county, including private providers who can test asymptomatic people, Kurian said. ‘A little ray of hope:’ Acceleration of COVID-19 spread is slowing down, San Antonio mayor saysThe city reports 48 calls were received regarding violations concerning the public health ordinance. The owner, Greg Barrineau, said he’s concerned about the increasing cases of COVID-19 cases but he’s fighting the ordinance in court for a fair application of the law.
San Antonio hospital capacity surge impacting surrounding rural communities
San Antonio – The surge of COVID-19 cases in San Antonio and Bexar County is causing concerns for hospitalization spikes in surrounding communities. Zamora said a patient looking to be transferred to a San Antonio hospital was turned away earlier this week. “We had a scare where we couldn’t ship someone to a San Antonio hospital,” he said. Eric Epley, the Southwest Texas Advisory Council executive director, said San Antonio hospitals are stressed. San Antonio, he said, still has about a 20-25% ICU capacity, but the problems isn’t beds.
Business booming for cleaning companies during COVID-19 pandemic
SAN ANTONIO – Shawn Phillips, owner of Texas Muscle and Fitness, said he’s spending a lot more money on cleaning supplies and materials since he re-opened a few weeks ago. On Friday, God Save the Clean LL was hired to drop by for a high-level electrostatic disinfection of the gym. The company started in 2017, but in March, they doubled business clients and cleaning crews. Munoz warns that many novel companies are trying to ride the coat tail of the pandemic. His partner, Ricardo Hernandez, said customers should do their homework about the type of cleaning supplies and materials that will be used before they agree to hire a cleaning company.
A warning to those heading to San Antonio Parks this holiday weekend
SAN ANTONIO – The City of San Antonio is urging residents to keep social distancing in mind as they head out to the parks and green-way trails this holiday weekend. Meridith Tilley, assistant parks and recreation manager, said the city expects a very busy weekend. The city has 33 trail steward teams assigned to green-way trailways, and seven liaisons who walk regional parks. On Thursday, Mayor Ron Nirenberg asked that the community do their part during the holiday weekend to keep transmissions at bay. Coronavirus update San Antonio, May 22: Officials discuss reopening of bars in Texas, testing numbers at walk-up sites“It’s weekends like this when we have a higher surge of activity — when we have the highest risk of things going in the wrong direction,” he said.
Check in on them: Don’t forget about seniors during pandemic, San Antonio psychiatrist says
San Antonio – Mental health experts are asking the community to be more vigilant about looking after seniors during the coronavirus pandemic. Dr. Jason Schillerstrom, a geriatric psychiatrist at UT Health San Antonio who works with Adult Protective Services (APS), said feelings of isolation and loneliness have been magnified by the stay-home restrictions among seniors he visits. District 4 officials say they are also staying in touch with seniors who’ve made contact with them. Other districts say they are in touch with senior centers to check in on any needs. APS reports the number of all contacts to the Texas Abuse Hotline for April decreased when compared to the last two years.
Veteran-supporting retailer takes on new mission to help workers fighting COVID-19
SAN ANTONIO – A local retailer that sells merchandise to benefit veterans is now taking on a new mission to help workers fighting against COVID-19 on the front lines. Watch the story in the video player above. For more COVID-19 coverage from KSAT, click here.
Your stimulus payment questions answered
Q: The IRS sent my stimulus payment to an old bank account that is now closed. The letter will provide information on how the Payment was made and how to report any failure to receive the Payment. Q: If my son is over 18 and I claimed him as a dependent, will he get a stimulus payment, or will I? A: Anyone over the age of 17 years old who is claimed by someone else as a dependent will not receive a stimulus payment. Will he still get a stimulus payment?
San Antonio church leaders evaluating when congregations can begin to meet again
San Antonio – San Antonio church leaders say they are actively having conversations about when their congregations will meet again for a live service. Chris Johnson, pastor of the First Baptist Church San Antonio, says pastors from across the city are calling and emailing each other to figure out a safe plan for their members. He said each church will decide when and how it’s safest for their congregation to meet again. Health experts with the city of San Antonio are recommending that churches wait to hold live services for a bit longer, based on what local data is showing. The Archdiocese of San Antonio of San Antonio released the following statement:"On April 16, Archbishop Gustavo Garcia-Siller extended the decree regarding changes impacting parishes in the Archdiocese of San Antonio due to COVID-19 until May 18.
COVID-19 stay home orders impacting police agencies in different ways
SAN ANTONIO – Police agencies in and around San Antonio are reporting different types of crime trends that have been noticed since the start of the year and the COVID-19 Stay at Home Order took effect. “Our residents are not getting cabin fever and having those issues at home like we see elsewhere,” he said. But he said vehicle burglaries are up 21%, criminal mischief is up 50%, while cases of forgery and fraud are up 89%. The police said there were stolen tools for ground maintenance, a 2002 Ford F-150 white truck with the school’s decal on the side and a utility trailer. An online look at the reports taken between March to April 2020 and compared to the same time in 2019 shows an increase in motor vehicle thefts, commercial burglaries, and robberies.
Renting in San Antonio? Here’s what you should know about eviction protections.
San Antonio – Concerns about evictions are on the mind for a lot of families whose members have lost their jobs recently. Fajardo said people need to know their rights, and several state and federal laws are protecting renters during this time. Any tenant in San Antonio or Texas cannot be evicted without a court order, and eviction courts are closed until April 30 unless that moratorium is extended, Fajardo said. “That is generally all public housing, Section 8 housing, of (Housing and Urban Development),” Fajardo said. Help is in the works for those who live in San Antonio, according to District 1 Councilman Roberto Trevino.
Making a difference, one stitch at a time
SAN ANTONIO – With a shortage of masks being felt across the country and right here at home, Alex Kling, owner of Trendy Little Rebelz children’s clothing, felt the fabric she had for her clothing line could make a difference. As of Friday, Kling said she had made around 350 masks for people in the San Antonio area. She has only provided those masks to first responders and health care workers, who have to provide work verification to get the 80 percent off, plus shipping and PayPal fees. She will continue to take orders from those on the front lines until she runs out of donated material. According to Kling, another source of masks for hospitals and health care workers is the Sewing Masks for San Antonio Facebook group.
Gas price free fall expected to continue
Gas price free fall expected to continuePublished: April 2, 2020, 5:34 pmDrivers, albeit a dwindling number as people stay at home, are seeing a free fall at the pump. Gas prices are tanking to their lowest prices in more than four years with more drops expected.
You can self-quarantine with a foster dog for free
SAN ANTONIO – Since the “Stay Home, Work Safe” order has many of us stuck at home, why not help foster an animal in need? Hoeing, along with his girlfriend, Gretel, answered the call to help foster one of hundreds of animals in need of a safe home. Dannie is one of the many animals in need of a family at San Antonio Animal Care Services. (KSAT 12)Those interested in the free ACS foster program can fill out an application online by clicking here. San Antonio Animal Care Services encourages community to help foster animals like Daisy during COVID-19.
More people putting all their eggs in one basket by trying out backyard chicken farming
San Antonio – What came first -- the chicken or the egg? Across San Antonio, chicks are becoming a hot commodity as more people scramble to try their hand at growing their own chickens for those eggs. It take a little while, but once they start producing, it’s pretty maintenance-free. Rosenthal’s chicks are still producing eggs, but he has a plan if food gets harder to come by. In San Antonio city limits, residents can have up to eight fowl.
Doctor provides proactive tips for diabetic patients during the coronavirus pandemic
Doctor provides proactive tips for diabetic patients during the coronavirus pandemicPublished: March 26, 2020, 10:23 pmWith the coronavirus pandemic being unpredictable as far as how long it will last, a UT Health San Antonio doctor is encouraging people with diabetes to have a plan in place.
‘I pay my bills off my tips’: Unemployed and uncertain after businesses close their doors
‘I pay my bills off my tips’: Unemployed and uncertain after businesses close their doorsPublished: March 25, 2020, 10:27 pm‘I pay my bills off my tips’: Unemployed and uncertain after businesses close their doors
These are the businesses that are/are not exempt in San Antonio’s ‘Stay Home, Work Safe’ orders
These are the businesses that are/are not exempt in San Antonio’s ‘Stay Home, Work Safe’ ordersPublished: March 25, 2020, 5:40 pmStay Home, Work Safe” emergency orders issued by San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff went into effect Tuesday night, but many people are still left with questions about which businesses must close and which are exempt.
Explained: San Antonio, Bexar County issue ‘Stay Home, Work Safe’ orders. Here’s what that means.
Explained: San Antonio, Bexar County issue ‘Stay Home, Work Safe’ orders. Here’s what that means. Published: March 24, 2020, 9:53 pmSan Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg and Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff issued tighter restrictions in an a new emergency order on Monday in an attempt to slow the spread of the novel coronavirus.
Drive-through COVID-19 testing is now in San Antonio. Here’s what we know.
Drive-through COVID-19 testing is now in San Antonio. Here’s what we know. Published: March 18, 2020, 10:27 amGov. Greg Abbott announced Friday that San Antonio would be the first city in Texas to get drive-through COVID-19 testing amid the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. The tests, however, are only for first responders and public safety and health care workers, state and city officials said.