Texas posts record 15,182 new coronavirus cases; Dallas County adds 1,179 new cases, 8 deaths

Dallas News

Updated at 5:20 p.m.: Revised to include statewide data.

Texas on Tuesday announced a single-day record 15,182 new coronavirus cases. The state is poised to cross the 1.2 million mark this week.

Meanwhile, Dallas County reported 1,179 more coronavirus cases, all of them new. Eight COVID-19 deaths also were reported.

Against the backdrop of case numbers that continue to mount at a relentless pace, Dallas County officials said Tuesday that its number of hospitalized coronavirus patients is approaching an all-time high.

“We remain concerned about a potential surge on our hospitals over the next few weeks, as we see the impact holiday gatherings may have on the spread of COVID-19,” officials said in a news release.

Across North Texas, 16.43% of hospital beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients.

Tuesday is the fifth straight day the hospital region has reported hospitalizations above Gov. Greg Abbott’s 15% threshold. According to the governor’s order, after seven straight days above the threshold, bars will be closed and retail establishments and restaurants — currently allowed to operate at 75% capacity — will have to cut back to 50% capacity. The area first hit the 15% threshold Friday.

The county’s latest victims include three Dallas residents, a man in his 60s and a man and woman each in their 70s; two Grand Prairie residents, a man in his 60s and a woman in her 70s; two DeSoto men, one in his 70s and one in his 80s; and an Irving woman in her 60s.

All had been hospitalized, and all but the Dallas man in his 60s had underlying health problems, officials said.

Of the new cases reported Tuesday, 1,096 are confirmed and 83 are probable. Those figures bring the county’s total confirmed cases to 127,786 and probable cases to 12,191. The county has recorded 1,218 confirmed COVID-19 deaths and 36 probable deaths.

The county recently announced it 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 Monday, 806 COVID-19 patients were in acute care in hospitals in the county. During the same period, 467 ER visits were for symptoms of the disease, making up about 22% 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.

Statewide data

Across the state, 15,182 more cases — a single-day high — and 170 COVID-19 deaths were reported Tuesday. Texas has now reported 1,184,250 confirmed cases and 21,549 fatalities.

There are 9,047 COVID-19 patients in Texas hospitals, including 2,523 in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.

The seven-day average positivity rate statewide, based on the date of test specimen collection, was 11.34% as of Monday. State health officials said using data based on when people were tested provides the most accurate positivity rate.

The state also provides a positivity rate based on when lab results were reported to the state; that rate stood at 11.72% as of Monday.

Officials previously calculated Texas’ coronavirus positivity rate by dividing the most recent seven days of new positive test results by the most recent seven days of total new test results. By that measure, the positivity rate is now 9.22%, according to the state dashboard.

A spokesman for the Texas Department of State Health Services said that positivity rate data based on lab results and new cases will likely be phased out but is still being provided for transparency and continuity purposes.

Tarrant County

Tarrant County reported 1,401 coronavirus cases and six new deaths Tuesday.

Details about the latest victims were not immediately available.

The newly reported cases bring the county’s total to 102,051, including 90,440 confirmed cases, 11,611 probable cases and 72,017 recoveries. The death toll stands at 849.

According to Tuesday’s numbers on the county dashboard, 896 people are hospitalized with the virus.

Collin County

The state added 390 coronavirus cases to Collin County’s total Tuesday, bringing the tally to 26,990. Three new COVID-19 fatalities also were reported. The county’s death toll stands at 256.

According to state data, the county has 3,017 active cases of the virus and has recorded 23,973 recoveries.

COVID-19 hospitalizations total 295, according to the county’s dashboard.

Denton County

Denton County reported 489 coronavirus cases — of which 389 are active — and no new deaths Tuesday.

The newly reported cases bring the county’s total to 24,133, including 5,896 that are active and 18,089 that are recoveries. The death toll stands at 148.

The newly reported cases raised the county’s total molecular cases to 20,383, while antigen cases stand at 3,750.

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

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: 2,994 cases, 37 deaths.Kaufman County: 4,900 cases, 83 deaths.Ellis County: 6,898 cases, 116 deaths.Johnson County: 5,407 cases, 106 deaths.

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