AMARILLO, Texas (KFDA) - As COVID-19 cases rise in Amarillo, doctors say there is nothing more that they can do and are calling on the community and the city for help hoping that with more people wearing masks, there will be less transmission of the virus.
“I’m saddened and I’m frustrated. Those are the two emotions I feel seeing people not wear masks in public,” said Dan Hendrick, a doctor in Amarillo.
As COVID-19 cases rise, Amarillo doctors are asking the community for help.
“There is not much more we can do,” said Pablo Rodriguez, an Amarillo infectious disease physician.
Help by wearing masks and asking The City of Amarillo to enforce the Governor’s mask mandate created five months ago.
“With the current state of things, we have now reached a level to where we need to do drastic things,” said Hendrick.
Amarillo physicians say the increase we are seeing in cases could have been less if more people wore a mask.
“If I’m breathing, I can pass it on to someone else in the store. Maybe they look healthy, but maybe they have a grandfather. Maybe he lives in assisted living or a nursing home. If that person passes it on to his grandfather who passes it on to five friends, I may have just killed five people by breathing in a store without a mask on,” said Whit Walker, an internal medicine doctor in Amarillo.
“Masks have been shown to reduce transmission. It was earlier in the pandemic that we were not certain of this. It is clear that using a mask prevents you from becoming ill and prevents you from transmitting,” said Rodriguez.
With hope for a vaccine, area doctors are asking the community to wear a mask for just a little longer.
“As far as it infringes upon your rights, yes. It’s infringing on my rights too and it sucks. I would like it to go away,” said Walker.
The mask mandate by Governor Abbott has been in place since June 3, requiring masks to be worn in public places by anyone 10 years and older.
The City of Amarillo will decide tomorrow afternoon at 3:00 p.m. if businesses need to start being fined for not enforcing the mandate after a warning.