Over 20 measures were passed during the 2021 legislative session in reaction to the COVID-19 pandemic. The bills included one that penalizes businesses seeking proof of coronavirus vaccination and another bill that bans mandatory closures of churches and gun stores during an emergency declaration.
Texas lawmakers were unable to adopt legislation that would limit the governor’s pandemic emergency powers during a crisis. So how did they fare in dealing with the COVID-19 pandemic in general?
Join The Texas Tribune on July 1 at noon Central time for a discussion with Lauren Ancel Meyers, director of the University of Texas at Austin COVID-19 Modeling Consortium; John Carlo, physician CEO at Prism Health North Texas; and Iván Meléndez, Hidalgo County health authority, about how Texas lawmakers addressed the health crisis during the 2021 legislative session.
Karen Brooks Harper, a Tribune health and human services reporter, will serve as moderator.
The discussion would be available for viewing after streaming
Meyers is a Cooley Centennial Professor of Integrative Biology and Statistics & Data Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin. She leads a team of scientists, engineers, and public health professionals in identifying epidemic drivers and developing practical tools for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other global health organizations to track and mitigate new viral risks, such as the COVID-19 pandemic.
Carlo is the CEO of Prism Health North Texas and the president of AIDS Arms Physicians Inc., North Texas’ biggest nonprofit, community-based HIV/AIDS health care service organization. He formerly worked for Dallas County Health and Human Services as a medical director.
Meléndez has been the medical director of the Hidalgo County Health and Human Services Department, the county’s local health authority, for the past 15 years. As a chief physician, he is responsible for providing and maintaining the medical license that allows the health department’s medical activities to take place.