CDC: number of Omicron cases doubling every 2-3 days; Judge Hidalgo strongly urges those 65 and older to get booster shot as soon as possible

It seems COVID-19 is making a vicious comeback before Christmas and Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo is taking action against the rise in COVID-19 numbers.

Judge Lina Hidalgo announced Monday that she is raising the county’s COVID-19 Threat Level Indicator from Level 3: Yellow to Level 2: Orange, the system’s second highest threat level. The threat level has increased due to a number of factors, including a rapid increase in new cases and positivity rate. 

Due to the explosive growth of the Omicron variant of the COVID-19 virus across Harris County, public health officials are strongly urging all eligible Harris County residents, especially individuals 65 and older, to get their booster shots as soon as possible. Residents who are not vaccinated are cautioned to do so immediately. Regardless of vaccination status, wear a mask and get tested before attending holiday gatherings.  

“Unfortunately, the Omicron variant has arrived in Harris County in full force,” said Judge Hidalgo. “These trends are understandably frustrating – especially as we close out the year with friends and family.  But we can still blunt the force of this latest wave if we take action. As we approach Christmas and New Years, consider giving yourself and your family the gift of health by getting your booster, getting tested before any gatherings of people outside of your household, and wearing a mask. It could very well save your life or that of a loved one.” 

Level 2 signifies an ongoing, uncontrolled level of COVID-19 in Harris County. At this level, unvaccinated residents should minimize contact with others, avoiding any medium or large gatherings, and only visiting permissible businesses that follow public health guidance. 

The COVID-19 vaccine and booster continues to be available at no charge for all Harris County residents. To find out more information, locations and hours, click here.

For a complete list of indicators, guidance, and related information visit