What you need to know about COVID-19 plus 2 interactive tracking maps

For health care officials, the new coronavirus is the fear of the unknown. Scientists...
For health care officials, the new coronavirus is the fear of the unknown. Scientists don’t know what they’re dealing with yet. (Source: CDC)
Published: Feb. 28, 2020 at 1:33 PM CST
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The novel coronavirus, COVID-19, hasn’t gained a foothold in the U.S., in Texas or in Central Texas, but concerns are rising and rumors and misinformation are circulating.

We’ve compiled links to resources and included an interactive map that you can use to track the spread of the virus.



06.03.20: Gov. Greg Abbott

reopens on June 15.

launches interactive RECess! campaign to provide “alternative recreation experiences through virtual activities and daily at-home adventures. Outdoor pavilions, indoor facilities and park areas are now available for rental. Bledsoe-Miller, Dewey and South Waco community centers will reopen to the public on June 15 with social distancing measures in place. Beginning June 15, organized sports games and competitions can resume on city property and city facilities. The Riverbend Park baseball / softball complex will reopen for practices and tournaments on June 15.

05.27.20: Temple Public Library resumes walk-in services on June 1 from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday-Friday and 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. on Saturday with a 50-patron limit and other restrictions. Curbside pickup continues.

that allows water parks, adult recreational sports programs, driver education programs and mall food courts to resume operations at 25% occupancy.

05.22.20: The University Interscholastic League released guidelines on


and marching band practice.


regarding the reopening of houses of worship.

The Texas Education Agency is offering free, at-home optional end-of-year assessments for which

05:08.20 The United Way of Waco-McLennan County and Waco Foundation have joined forces to create a community response fund to help residents amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Businesses, organizations and residents

The fund will provide contributions to Caritas of Waco, EOAC, Mission Waco and Salvation Army, each of which will distribute funds directly to individuals and families for needs such as food, housing, utilities and childcare.

The Texans Back to Work Task Force issued a

on 05.06.20 that includes more than 400 recommendations for employers, employees, the public and state and local governments.


*04.29.20: Information about the

for parents who have to return to work, but don’t have available childcare.

Shelter in place orders and business closings have left many area residents temporarily unemployed. You may apply for unemployment benefits online.

Offline resources

Heart of Texas MHMR hotline: 1-866-752-3451.

Disaster Distress Helpline, 1-800-985-5990, provides immediate crisis counseling to people affected by the coronavirus pandemic

*Bell County has established a COVID-19 phone bank to help better answer questions within the community. The phone bank will be staffed from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Calls received after hours and weekends will roll to 211. The number for the phone bank is 254-933-5203.

Bell County has added a phone number for the public to call with question about COVID-19 and the Local Disaster Declaration for Public Health Emergency. Beginning on Saturday, March, 21, the call center will be open daily, 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. To reach a representative dial 211.

The City of Copperas Cove has established a COVID-19 Hotline at (254)542-8920. The hotline may be utilized as another resource by citizens who are seeking further information and wish to speak with a city staff member. The COVID-19 hotline will be available starting on March 26 from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Mondays through Fridays and from 8 a.m. to noon on Saturdays. Residents may also find information


The Disaster Distress Helpline, 1-800-985-5990, provides immediate crisis counseling to people affected by the coronavirus pandemic The Helpline is a 24-hour-a-day, seven-day-a-week and free resource that responds to people who need crisis counseling and support in dealing with the traumatic effects of a natural or human-caused disaster.

The City of Killeen has activated a COVID-19 hotline to answer questions related to the situation by phone. The phone number is 254-616-3209. Operators are available Monday through Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Salvation Army emotional and spiritual care hotline available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days a week at 844-458-HOPE

Texas Health and Human Services has launched a 24/7 statewide mental health support line to help Texans experiencing anxiety, stress or emotional challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic. This new resource offers COVID-19-related mental health support for all Texans. People can call the Statewide COVID-19 Mental Health Support Line 24 hours a day, 7 days a week toll-free at 833-986-1919.

Texas Health and Human Services encourages all Texans in need of COVID-19 information and referrals to community resources to call the 2-1-1 Texas hotline 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Texans, no matter where they live, can dial 2-1-1 or (877) 541-7905 and select option 6 to get information and referrals to COVID-19 social services, including testing, community clinics, unemployment benefits and more. Texans can also dial 2-1-1 to find information about local community resources such as financial assistance for utilities or rent and food pantries, housing assistance, crisis counseling, utility payment assistance, and senior services.

Fort Hood has established a hotline for personnel seeking information about the virus at (254) 553-6612.


COVID-19 ER Hotline: (254) 252-9387

COVID-19 Clinic Provider: (254) 252-2491

As the coronavirus crisis sparks concern and uncertainty across the nation, the Southern Baptists of Texas Convention Disaster Relief (SBTC Disaster Relief) has responded by making chaplains available to the public through a simple phone call. The toll-free number (1-800-921-3287) will allow people to visit with a chaplain to receive prayer and encouragement. The phone number will be available to call from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily for as long as the crisis remains.

Precautions you can take

• Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

• Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

• Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

• Stay home when you are sick.

• Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

• Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Follow the CDC's recommendations for using a facemask

• The CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID 19.

• Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID 19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).