Dallas County reported 759 more coronavirus cases Saturday, all of which the county considers new. Three new COVID-19 deaths were also reported.
Labs either report coronavirus cases directly to the county health department or to the state health department, which then relays the information to individual counties. Of cases reported Saturday, Dallas County health officials said 360 came from the state’s reporting system and were all from October. The remaining 399 cases were reported directly to the county health department.
The latest victims were a Mesquite man in his 60s, a Dallas woman in her 70s and a Dallas man in his 80s. All three had been critically ill at a hospital and had underlying health problems.
“Our average number of COVID-19 cases per day continues to rise each week, as does the number of patients in the hospital and our positivity rate,” Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said in a written statement. “UT Southwestern medical modelers tell us that we’re on pace to have our highest number of average daily cases per week by Thanksgiving if we don’t immediately go back to doing the things that we know how to do: wear our mask, avoid crowds and practice good social distancing and hygiene.”
Of the new cases reported Saturday, 622 are confirmed cases and 137 are probable cases. The newly reported cases bring the county’s total confirmed cases to 96,694 and probable cases to 5,948. The county has recorded 1,116 confirmed COVID-19 deaths and 15 probable deaths.
A spokeswoman recently said the county was counting only positive antigen tests (sometimes called rapid tests) as probable cases, though a few antibody and “household” results had been included previously.
Although other North Texas counties provide estimates for how many people have recovered from the virus, Dallas County officials do not report recoveries, saying it’s not a measurement used by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
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 Friday, 462 COVID-19 patients were in acute care in hospitals in the county. During the same period, 428 ER visits were for symptoms of the disease.
The county reported that between Oct. 18 and 24, there were 587 confirmed and probable cases in school-age children.
The county’s provisional seven-day average of daily new confirmed and probable cases for the latest reporting period, Oct. 18 to 24, was 652. The figure is calculated by the date of the COVID-19 test collection, according to the county.
Dallas County doesn’t provide a positivity rate for all COVID-19 tests conducted in the area; county health officials have said they don’t have an accurate count of how many tests are conducted each day. But as of the county’s most recent reporting period, 15.4% of people who showed up at hospitals with COVID-19 symptoms tested positive for the virus. That’s an increase from the previous reporting period, when 14% of such patients tested positive.
Across the state, 6,845 more cases and 90 COVID-19 deaths were reported Saturday. Texas has now reported 900,596 confirmed cases and 18,024 fatalities.
There are 5,696 COVID-19 patients in Texas hospitals, including 1,500 in the Dallas-Fort Worth area.
The seven-day average positivity rate statewide, based on the date of test specimen collection, was 9.82% as of Friday. 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 10.37% as of Friday.
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 8.53%, according to its dashboard.
A spokesman for the Texas Department of State Health Services said positivity rate data based on lab results and new cases probably will be phased out but is still being provided for transparency and continuity purposes.
Tarrant County reported 674 coronavirus cases Saturday.
No new deaths were reported, leaving the death toll at 738.
The newly reported cases bring the county’s total to 67,484, including 60,779 confirmed cases, 6,705 probable cases and 53,408 recoveries.
According to Saturday’s numbers on the county dashboard, 526 people are hospitalized with the virus.
Collin County added 273 coronavirus cases Saturday, bringing its total to 18,635. The county also reported five new deaths, raising the toll to 186.
The county has 1,310 active cases of the virus — including 177 people who are hospitalized, according to the county dashboard — and has recorded 17,325 recoveries.
Collin County, which receives its data from the Department of State Health Services since turning over case management in June, has a note on its dashboard warning residents that it has low confidence in the numbers the state is providing.
Denton County reported 117 coronavirus cases — of which 81 are active — and six new deaths Saturday.
The latest deaths include a man in his 70s who was a resident of Eagle Ridge Alzheimer’s Special Care Center, a man in his 80s who was a resident Rambling Oaks Courtyard in Highland Village, a man and a woman in their 60s who lived in The Colony, and a woman in her 70s who lived in unincorporated southwest Denton County.
The sixth death was a man in his 80s who was a resident of Saddle Brook Memory Care in Frisco. There have been 11 coronavirus deaths reported at the facility in the last month, and the Texas Department of Health and Human Services is investigating to make sure Saddle Brook is following health and safety rules.
The newly reported cases bring the county’s total to 16,978, including 3,031 that are active and 13,809 that are recoveries. The death toll stands at 138.
The newly reported cases raised the county’s total molecular cases to 14,978, while antigen cases stand at 2,000.
There are 76 COVID-19 patients hospitalized, according to the county’s data.
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: 1,988 cases, 33 deaths.
- Kaufman County: 3,629 cases, 58 deaths.
- Ellis County: 5,043 cases, 81 deaths.
- Johnson County: 3,821 cases, 66 deaths.