HOUSTON, June 5 (Xinhua) -- The number of COVID-19 cases in the fourth-largest U.S. city of Houston has steadily increased since the state of Texas reopened on May 1, health officials were quoted as saying by local media on Friday.
David Persse with the Houston Health Department told local TV station KTRK that he is concerned about the rise in cases.
"We're seeing the numbers increasing. They're not increasing exponentially. But they're increasing linearly in time with the same steady pace. So the optimizations are in fact, increasing our case counts," Persse said.
Persse also stressed the danger of COVID-19, saying the virus is still spreading in the communities in Houston area.
The state of Texas, where Houston is located, continues its opening up as Governor Greg Abbot allowed the capacity in bars to increase from 25 percent to 50 percent this week.
As of Thursday, Texas reported nearly 70,000 cases of COVID-19.