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Coronavirus updates in Central Texas: Austin-Travis County reaches 200 COVID-19 cases; Gov. Abbott expands executive order on travel

Here are the latest COVID-19 updates, closures and postponements in Central Texas for Sunday, March 29.

AUSTIN, Texas — Editor's note: This live blog is no longer active. For the latest updates, check out Monday's live blog here.

KVUE is keeping you updated with the latest coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, news in the Austin area.

Scroll down for the top headlines and latest updates in KVUE's March 29 live blog.

Top Headlines:

Sunday Updates:

5:30 p.m. – Austin-Travis County is reporting 200 confirmed cases of COVID-19.

The age ranges of these cases include:

  • 0-9 – 4
  • 10-19 – 2
  • 20-29 – 45
  • 30-39 – 50
  • 40-49 – 37
  • 50-59 – 36
  • 60-69 – 15
  • 70-79 – 8
  • 80 and over – 3

For more information on these cases, click here.

5 p.m. – Hays County is reporting 16 confirmed cases of COVID-19. 

By city, the cases are in:

  • Austin - 2
  • Buda - 5
  • Dripping Springs - 1
  • Kyle - 5
  • San Marcos - 3

All of these cases have been adults.

For more information on the previously reported Hays County cases, click here.

3 p.m. – Gov. Greg Abbott expands previous executive order requiring people flying into Texas from New York, New Jersey, Connecticut and New Orleans to be quarantined for 14 days or for the duration of their stay, whichever is shorter. The order now also includes anyone traveling by road into Texas from "any location in the state of Louisiana," as well as anyone flying into Texas from Miami, Detroit, Chicago, California or Washington.

In addition to that order expansion, Abbott also issued a ban on the release of "dangerous felons from prisons and jails in Texas."

Abbott also gave updated numbers on the spread of COVID-19 in Texas. He said, as of March 29, 25,483 people have been tested for coronavirus in Texas, 2,552 of whom tested positive across 118 counties. Of those 2,552 patients, 176 have been hospitalized and 34 people have died in Texas due to COVID-19.

2 p.m. – Gov. Greg Abbott is expected to give an update on the State's response to coronavirus starting at 2:30 p.m.

1:45 p.m. – Round Rock ISD says it will continue serving curbside breakfast from 8 to 9 a.m. and lunch from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Friday at campus-based meal distribution locations until March 31. But, starting on March 31, student meal distribution will happen once per day with lunch and breakfast for the following day available for pickup from 11 a.m. to 1 p.m.

RRISD has suspended all normal school operations through at least April 13. For more information on RRISD's meal distribution and other COVID-19 updates, click here.

1:30 p.m. – Burnet County confirms third positive case of COVID-19, according to County Judge James Oakley.

Oakley said in a Facebook post that the Burnet County Commissioners Court will hold a special meeting on Monday at 9 a.m. to host a presentation from Local Health Authority Dr. Juliette Madrigal and to discuss clarifications and possible modifications to the "Stay Home and Stay Safe" order that was enacted on March 25.

12 p.m. – Gov. Greg Abbott announces that the Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) has submitted a waiver to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services requesting flexibility in administering Medicaid to help with potential health care staff shortages.

If approved, the federal flexibilities would include:

  • Allowing fully trained, qualified nurse aides to provide home health and hospice services even if they have not been employed and paid as an aide within the preceding 24 months.
  • Allowing non-clinical staff to provide feeding assistance to residents in nursing facilities without completing the required 16-hour training course. Since group meals are no longer served due to social distancing, additional feeding assistants are needed for one-on-one assistance. These assistants would be supervised and assigned only to non-complex cases.
  • Allowing individuals with intellectual disabilities in the Home and Community-based Services and Intermediate Care Facility programs to temporarily receive their same services in either setting.

If granted, the flexibilities would remain in place for as long as necessary during the public health emergency, according to Abbott's office.

10:20 a.m. – The Texas Division of Emergency Management will receive a $236,756,360.44 federal grant to aid its response to the coronavirus pandemic. The funding comes from FEMA through the Robert T. Stafford Act, which grants authority for the federal government to assist in local disaster aid efforts.

"I know this is a time of serious uncertainty for both the physical and financial health of our families and our country, but I want to assure my constituents, the 29 million people that I'm privileged to represent in the State of Texas, that the federal government is working to provide the relief we can," Sen. John Cornyn said.  "I commend the Trump Administration for prioritizing the health of Texans as well as local leaders in Texas working to fight this pandemic."

9:15 a.m.  Capital Metro said ridership on Saturday was down an estimated 53% from 2019. Ridership continues to decline as customers are urged to only use transit for essential trips to critical services.

Major updates from Saturday, March 28:

WATCH: Texas doctors dealing with mask shortage get supplies from Mexico


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