Saturday, July 11, 2020

Cases Continue Rising

Positive COVID-19 cases for Tom Green County rose by 357 this week.  Shannon Medical Center's Dr. Chris Barnett informed the community that they use the rapid turnaround PCR test for ER patients and hospital staff.  The turnaround time in Shannon's drive-through testing is 7-10 days.  He noted citizens have sought antibody testing and those results can be used to identify people able to donate plasma that can be used to treat coronavirus patients.  Numbers from the antigen test started on June 30th and 54 are included in this week's total.

COVID-19 invaded at least one area nursing home, Regency House   The company's website had a statement:

On Saturday, we learned that a Regency House resident who was sent to the hospital had a positive test result for COVID-19. At that time, we arranged to test all team members and residents to manage the situation proactively. The results have been received and 23 residents and 8 team members have had a positive test result. All effected residents have been moved to an isolated wing to prevent spread of the virus. The effected team members are isolating at home. 
The company had positive cases in nursing homes, one in Austin and another in San Antonio. 

The weekly report for our area indicated a large number of pending tests, nearly 1,100,  

With a seven day average positivity rate of almost 26% there could be an additional 280 cases in the testing pipeline.  Dr. Barnett said testing would get worse before it gets better due to lack of capacity and a shortage of supplies.. His worry is the rate of increase of new cases, a portion of which end up in the hospital.

Dr. Barnett encouraged everyone to do their part to minimize spread.  That means wear a mask, social distance, stay away from large gatherings, wash your hands and don't touch your mouth, nose or eyes.

City Council will hold a special session on Tuesday, July 14th but it won't be on the coronavirus.  It's a budget session dealing with water, wastewater, storm water and solid waste/landfill.

Update:  The City announced 58 new positive cases today and two additional deaths.  Currently 39 patients are hospitalized for COVID-19.  Total positives are 919, 865 PCR tests and 54 antigen tests.  Six people have died from the disease to date in Tom Green County  Texas had 10,351 new cases today.  Sadly, that's a new record.

Update 7-14-20:  Case count is now 1160, with active cases at 664.  Nine people have died.  Eight deaths occurred in the last three weeks    Texas had 10,745 new cases yesterday, breaking the old record.

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