Dallas County reports 1,640 new COVID-19 cases, 3 deaths

Dallas News

Updated at 4:45 p.m Wednesday: Revised to include new case numbers from Collin County.

Dallas County reported 1,640 new coronavirus cases on Wednesday. Three COVID-19 deaths also were reported.

The county’s latest victims were a Dallas woman in her 70s, a Duncanville woman in her 60s and a Lancaster woman in her 40s. All had been hospitalized, and all but the Duncanville woman had underlying health problems, officials said.

Of the new cases reported Wednesday, 1,407 are confirmed and 233 are probable. Those figures bring the county’s total confirmed cases to 129,193 and probable cases to 12,424. The county has recorded 1,221 confirmed COVID-19 deaths and 36 probable deaths.

Across North Texas, 15.77% of hospital beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients.

Wednesday is the sixth straight day the hospital region has reported hospitalizations above Gov. Greg Abbott’s 15% threshold. According to the governor’s order, after seven consecutive days above the threshold, bars will close, and retail stores and restaurants — currently allowed to operate up to 75% capacity — will have to cut back to 50% capacity. The area first hit the 15% threshold Friday.

Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said in a statement that Wednesday’s numbers appeared to be accurate as reporting agencies were back online following the Thanksgiving holiday. Jenkins also encouraged residents who were in crowds last week to get tested for the virus.

“We must stop looking at our neighbors with contempt for their perceived shortcomings in keeping our community safe, and instead focus on what we can do to get a little bit better as we all renew our strength towards shared sacrifice and patriotism,” Jenkins said in a written statement. “This will make our community and country stronger for a little while longer as we await the broad dissemination of a vaccine.”

The county is counting only positive antigen tests (sometimes called rapid tests) as probable cases; a few antibody and “household” results were included previously.

While other North Texas counties provide estimates for how many people have recovered from the virus, Dallas County officials do not report recoveries, noting that the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not use that metric.

Health officials use hospitalizations, intensive-care admissions and emergency room visits as key metrics to track the real-time impact of COVID-19 in the county. In the 24-hour period that ended Tuesday, 800 COVID-19 patients were in acute care in hospitals in the county. During the same period, 575 ER visits were for symptoms of the disease, making up about 21% of all ER visits in the county.

More than two-thirds of all confirmed cases requiring hospitalization so far have been in people under 65, and diabetes has been an underlying condition in about a third of all hospitalized patients, according to the county.

Of the county’s total confirmed COVID-19 deaths, about 23% are associated with long-term care facilities.

Tarrant County

Tarrant County reported 1,730 coronavirus cases and five new deaths Wednesday.

The county’s latest victims were two Fort Worth residents — a man in his 20s and a woman in her 40s — a Bedford man in his 60s, a Hurst woman in her 80s and a North Richland Hills woman in her 70s. Four of the five victims had underlying health conditions, but health officials did not specify which victim did not.

The newly reported cases bring the county’s total to 103,781, including 91,981 confirmed cases, 11,800 probable cases and 73,232 recoveries. The death toll stands at 854.

According to Wednesday’s numbers on the county dashboard, 881 people are hospitalized with the virus.

Denton County

Denton County reported 492 coronavirus cases — of which 384 are active — and no new deaths Wednesday.

The newly reported cases bring the county’s total to 24,623, including 6,194 that are active and 18,281 that are recoveries. The death toll stands at 148.

The newly reported cases raised the county’s total molecular cases to 20,741, while antigen cases stand at 3,882.

There are 140 COVID-19 patients hospitalized, according to the county’s data.

Collin County

The state added 563 coronavirus cases to Collin County’s total Tuesday, bringing the tally to 27,553. Five new COVID-19 fatalities also were reported. The county’s death toll stands at 261.

According to state data, the county has 3,138 active cases of the virus and has recorded 24,415 recoveries.

COVID-19 hospitalizations total 318, according to the county’s dashboard.

Other counties

The Texas Department of State Health Services has taken over reporting for these other North Texas counties. In some counties, new data may not be reported every day.

The latest numbers are:

Rockwall County: 3,274 cases, 37 deaths.Kaufman County: 5,279 cases, 83 deaths.Ellis County:7,460 cases, 117 deaths.Johnson County: 5,917 cases, 106 deaths.

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