BEAUMONT, Texas — A group of 58 Southeast Texas health care professionals have released a letter Friday morning calling for officials to issue a stay-a-at-home order.

The group including, 49 doctors and nine nurse practitioners, called for an order similar to the one in Harris County.

Many are unable to be tested and there is "likely a vast underestimation of how widespread this is in our region" the letter said.

The letter urged public officials to "make the correct decisions during this critical time."

"We urge you to follow the examples put forth by our neighboring communities and issue a strong and enforceable Stay at Home order immediately," the letter said.

The  names of those who signed the letter were not released but one of them is Dr. Ramzi Dakour who told 12News on Thursday he was in favor of such an order.

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"I would urge law makers to make a 'stay at home order' within the next 24 to 48 hours," Dakour said. "Because this would be the best way to help stop the spread of the coronavirus."

He's pushing for tighter restrictions and believes without it, things are going to get worse. 

"Our hearts go out to everyone in Southeast Texas who have already been affected by this virus and to their families and loved ones. Our hope is that we can mitigate the effects on our communities by taking quick and necessary action," the letter also said.

Here's the complete letter...

3/26/2020

We, the undersigned physicians and healthcare providers, are calling on the surrounding counties including Jefferson, Hardin, and Orange, to immediately issue a Stay at Home order consistent with the one issued by Harris county, which allows only pre-assigned critical infrastructure as listed by the US Department of Homeland Security National Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency (CISA) to remain open and for people to remain in their individual residences unless absolutely necessary.

The threat of COVID-19 in our communities is real and must be taken seriously. Many people are unable to get tested due to lack of resources, and there is likely a vast underestimation of how widespread this is in our region. We should do everything possible to ensure the safety of all and to avoid overwhelming our healthcare facilities.  Group of 58

We would like to emphasize to our elected officials that under a public health crisis, the health and safety of the general public should take precedent to all other concerns. We are reliant on you to make the correct decisions during this critical time.  We urge you to follow the examples put forth by our neighboring communities and issue a strong and enforceable Stay at Home order immediately.

Sincerely,

58 signatories (49 physicians, 9 NPs) as of 8:45am 3/27/20