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Gov. Abbott loosens restrictions on some surgeries and other medical procedures

If your surgery was postponed because of the coronavirus pandemic, you may be able to reschedule under the governor's new executive order.

AUSTIN, Texas — Gov. Greg Abbott Friday unveiled his plan to gradually reopen Texas and it includes loosening some restrictions on surgeries.

Under the governor's executive order in March, only surgeries and procedures that were "medically necessary to diagnose or correct a serious medical condition or to preserve the life of a patient" were allowed.

Other surgeries and medical procedures were canceled so Texas hospitals could make room for COVID-19 patients and focus resources on them.

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Under the new executive order, there will be some exceptions beginning April 22: 

  • Any procedure that, if performed in accordance with the commonly accepted standard of clinical practice, would not deplete the hospital capacity or the PPE needed to cope with COVID-19
  • Any surgery or procedure performed in a licensed health care facility that has certified in writing to Texas HHSC that it will reserve at least 25% of its hospital capacity for treatment of COVID-19 patients.
  • And  that it will not request any PPE from any public source — whether federal, state, or local — for the duration of the COVID-19 disaster.

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