Dallas County on Wednesday reported 718 new coronavirus cases and 26 more COVID-19 deaths.
The latest victims were mostly in their 60s and older. Eleven lived in Garland, seven in Dallas, four in Irving, three in Grand Prairie and one in DeSoto. All had underlying high-risk health conditions.
County Judge Clay Jenkins said in a written statement that Gov. Greg Abbott’s announcement Tuesday that masks would no longer be mandatory as of next Wednesday should not stop people from wearing them in public.
“This announcement is not in keeping with what local doctors and hospitals recommend to keep us safe and get our community to herd immunity as quickly as possible,” Jenkins said.
“Most businesses will continue to require masks in their establishments,” he said, “and residents should listen to doctors, the facts, and the science regarding masking, distancing, hand-washing and avoiding crowds to give them themselves, their family, their community, and our country our best chance of staying strong until the vaccine can be given in sufficient numbers for us to reach herd immunity.”
Of the new cases, 317 were confirmed and 401 were probable. The numbers bring the county’s overall case total to 282,399 — 246,627 confirmed and 35,772 probable. The death toll is 3,044.
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, 417 COVID-19 patients were in acute care in hospitals in the county. During the same period, 396 ER visits were for symptoms of the disease.
According to the state, 309,193 people in Dallas County have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. The number of fully vaccinated residents is 174,874, or 8.7% of the county’s population 16 and older.
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Across the state, 7,822 more cases were reported Wednesday — 6,181 new ones and 1,641 older ones recently reported by labs.
The state also reported 297 COVID-19 deaths, raising its toll to 43,563.
Of the new cases, 4,781 were confirmed and 1,400 were probable. Of the older cases, 1,422 were confirmed and 219 were probable.
The state’s case total is now 2,663,414 — 2,304,081 confirmed and 359,333 probable.
There are 5,508 COVID-19 patients in Texas hospitals, including 1,336 in the Dallas-Fort Worth area. On Wednesday, 8% of patients in the hospital region covering the Dallas-Fort Worth area were COVID-19 patients — below the 15% threshold the state has used to define high hospitalizations.
The seven-day average positivity rate statewide for molecular tests, based on the date of test specimen collection, was 8.7% as of Tuesday. For antigen tests, the positivity rate for the same period was 3.6%. A molecular test is considered more accurate and is sometimes also called a PCR test; an antigen test is also called a rapid test. Gov. Greg Abbott has said a positivity rate above 10% is cause for concern.
According to the state, 3,808,222 people in Texas have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine, while 2,100,141 — or 9.4% of the state’s population 16 and older — are fully vaccinated.
Tarrant County reported 15 deaths and 658 cases Wednesday.
The latest victims were mostly in their 60s and older. Six lived in Fort Worth, two each in Arlington and Hurst, and one each in Bedford, Benbrook, Euless, Kennedale and Sansom Park.
Of the new cases, 358 were confirmed and 300 probable. The numbers bring the county’s case total to 243,725 — 207,093 confirmed and 36,632 probable. The death toll is 2,912.
According to the county, 420 people were hospitalized with the virus as of Wednesday.
According to the state, 231,964 people in Tarrant County have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. The number of fully vaccinated residents is 159,597, or 10% of the county’s population 16 and older.
The state added no coronavirus cases and four deaths to Collin County’s totals Wednesday.
No details about the latest victims were available.
The numbers bring the county’s case total to 83,404 — 70,159 confirmed and 13,245 probable. The death toll is 732.
According to the county, 247 people are hospitalized with the virus.
According to the state, 144,241 people in Collin County have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine. The number of fully vaccinated residents is 84,399, or 10.5% of the county’s population 16 and older.
Denton County reported 651 cases and one death Wednesday.
The latest victim was a Krum woman in her 50s.
The newly reported cases bring the county’s case total to 65,821 — 49,833 confirmed and 15,988 probable. The death toll is 421.
According to the county, 90 people are hospitalized with the virus.
According to the state, 106,467 people in Denton County have received at least one dose of a coronavirus vaccine, while 65,584 are fully vaccinated — 9.3% of the county’s population 16 and older.
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: 10,636 cases (8,756 confirmed and 1,880 probable), 129 deaths.
- Kaufman County: 14,871 cases (12,685 confirmed and 2,186 probable), 220 deaths.
- Ellis County: 20,936 cases (18,036 confirmed and 2,900 probable), 280 deaths.
- Johnson County: 18,655 cases (16,101 confirmed and 2,554 probable), 323 deaths.