A new report from the University of North Texas Health Science Center in Fort Worth finds that face mask requirements are having an impact on the spread of COVID-19.
The report does not recommend a new shelter-in-place order for Texas at this time.
The report was done by Dr. Rajesh R. Nandy, an Associate Professor of Biostatistics & Epidemiology.
The study looked at COVID-19 infection rates and the various face mask orders in states across the U.S. and in counties in north Texas. The research found that it usually takes between 10 and 14 days for the impact of a face mask order to begin showing up in the daily COVID-19 case reports for a specific state or region. The report found that most states without a face mask requirement showed significant increases in the number of COVID-19 cases, while states with face mask requirements showed either a small increase or a decrease in cases.
The report says all four counties in the DFW Metroplex have shown a stabilization in terms of the number of new cases. The researchers do note some concern over the lack of a county-wide mask mandate in Collin County, saying that county is showing the smallest change in infection rates. The research is predicting an increase a growth in hospitalizations in Collin County.
Dr. Nandy is not calling for a new state-wide shelter in place order right now. He notes that the use of masks in public places is now mandatory and that there has been a steady decline in the general amount of travel and mobility since mid-June, which can also help reduce the number of new cases. He concludes that for those wondering if mask mandates have been effective in north Texas, the answer is "yes".