EDINBURG, Texas – The chief medical officer for DHR Health says politics does not always sit well with health and science.

Dr. Robert Martinez urged residents of the Rio Grande Valley to continue adhere to guidelines issued by the Centers for Disease Control.

“The (COVID-19) vaccine is the light at the end of the tunnel, however, that tunnel continues to be long. Fresh this morning some new guidelines from the CDC. I think our job here at DHR Health is continue to do this work but also to continue to remind everyone in the community about the precautions that need to continue to be taken,” Martinez said.

“People in the community need to continue to wear their mask. They need to continue to social distance. They need to continue with their hygiene, hand hygiene in particular until we are out of this and everybody is vaccinated. We are still at risk.’

Martinez said those who have received the COVID-19 vaccine still have a small chance of transmitting the coronavirus. 

“They can transmit it not knowingly so let’s wait until everybody gets the vaccine, let’s do that as quickly as possible. And, again, be looking out for the changes that we need to follow to make sure that we maximize safety for everyone in the community.”

Martinez made his remarks at a ceremony to mark the 100,000th COVID vaccine administered by DHR Health. The event was held at the Edinburg Conference Center at Renaissance. Martinez pointed out that new CDC guidelines came out the same morning as the ceremony.

“The CDC guidelines that were put out this morning recommend continuing to wear a mask certainly. So, politics is one thing, health and science is another. Sometimes they work together, sometimes they intersect, sometimes they collide,” Martinez said.

“But again, I think we all agree on doing what we need to be doing on a scientific basis, and that is, like the CDC has put out this morning, continue to heed those warnings so we can get back to a normal way of life, hopefully, and keep people from getting super sick, getting in the hospital, and anyone losing any more of their loved ones.”  

Among the other speakers at the celebration were Marissa Castañeda, senior executive vice president at DHR Health, Dr. Manish Singh, CEO of DHR Health, Dr. Carlos Cardenas, chairman of the board of directors at DHR Health, and Sherri Abendroth, director of emergency management at DHR Health. The patient to receive DHR’s 100,000th COVID vaccination was 93-year-0ld Majorie Porter, a lifelong resident of the Valley.                         

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