The new COVID-19 cases being reported by the City of El Paso Department of Public Health on Thursday are terrifying, and it doesn’t look like it will be getting better anytime soon. City and County health officials are reporting 1,161 new COVID-19 cases, and an additional 104 delayed reporting cases from the State.

City officials say today’s spike is “part of an overall increase in cases seen over the last month due in part to ongoing community spread”, but what that means is the coming weeks are going to be just as scary as today’s numbers because we are heading into the holiday season. People won’t stop gathering at homes and at events, we won’t wear our masks and wash our hands, and we are letting our guards down because we are all tired of COVID-19 restrictions.

Unfortunately because of the spiking numbers, the Mayor, the Department of Public Health, and the Office of Emergency Management have implemented more restrictions to slow the COVID-19 spread and they are considering additional restrictions. The City and County will hold a press conference Thursday afternoon at 1 p.m. to talk about the numbers and the restrictions.

The numbers released on Thursday are from the CDC weeks 40, 41, 42 and 43. We are currently in week 43 so that means that these crazy numbers are recent and the people who tested positive have been contagious for the last couple of weeks at least. That's important because since we aren't being serious about mask-wearing, not social distancing, and not paying attention to contact tracing by the City and County, those people could have been infecting the people around them.

I know you're tired of this. Everyone is. But please, wear your mask, stop gathering in groups that aren't in your immediate household, and cooperate with contact tracing.