Dallas County Health and Human Services reported 135 new cases of the novel coronavirus and 10 deaths Tuesday afternoon. The new infections mark the highest one-day reported total for the county during the ongoing pandemic. Tuesday’s death count is tied for the highest total reported by the county during a single day.
Dallas County also reported 10 deaths on April 14.
The youngest of those who died was a 17-year-old girl from Lancaster. The oldest was a man in his 90s from Dallas. Three of the dead were residents of long-term care facilities. Including those 10 people reported Tuesday, 94 people in Dallas County have now died from COVID-19.
According to DCHHS, 77% of people hospitalized in Dallas County for the coronavirus have been workers in industries identified as essential by the county. Most have been 60 or older or suffered from an underlying health condition. Almost a third of Dallas County’s hospitalized patients have suffered from diabetes.
Tuesday’s reports come the day after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott announced plans to reopen restaurants, retailers, movie theaters and malls at 25% capacity. As he announced loosening Texas’ coronavirus restrictions, Abbott touted Texas’ declining infection rate.
“Remember, the governor’s orders may change but the underlying science will not.” – Clay Jenkins
“With the governor’s decree yesterday opening up more businesses throughout Texas, both North Texas business owners and residents must be particularly careful in making their best personal responsibility choices,” Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said in a statement. “The White House and most public health experts are cautioning that the safety precautions should not be loosened until deaths and new cases have seen a two-week decline and there is sufficient testing in the state to provide protection to workers and patrons in the newly open businesses. Unfortunately, none of these criteria have been met in either the state or in North Texas. So it’s particularly important that you exercise good personal decisions to keep you, your family and our community safe.”
Jenkins urged Dallas County residents to consult the Centers for Disease Control and advice from local officials when they decide how much, or how little, to expand their daily activities as the pandemic continues.
“Remember, the governor’s orders may change but the underlying science will not,” Jenkins said.
Stephen Young has written about Dallas news for the Observer since 2014. He’s a Dallas native and a graduate of the University of North Texas.