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COVID-19: More than 200 new cases, six more deaths reported in Central Texas

Published: Sep. 16, 2020 at 5:58 PM CDT
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(KWTX) – The total number of COVID-19 cases confirmed in Central Texas rose by 210 Wednesday to 18,854 and state and local health authorities reported at least six more area residents diagnosed with the virus have died.

The Texas Department of State Health Services reported additional deaths Wednesday in Bell, Falls, Hill, Limestone and McLennan Counties and Navarro County officials reported an additional death, as well.

According to state data at least 263 area residents diagnosed with the virus have now died, including 77 Bell County residents, two more than the local count of 75; six Bosque County residents; 11 Coryell County residents, two more than the local count of nine; four Falls County residents; one Freestone County resident; four Hamilton County residents; 13 Hill County residents; eight Lampasas County residents; five Leon County residents; 10 Limestone County residents; 92 McLennan County residents, one more than the local count; five Milam County residents; 23 Navarro County residents, seven fewer than the local count of 31; and four Robertson County residents.

The statewide death toll rose by 135 to 14,478 Wednesday.

The state reported 6,026 additional cases of the virus, but said only 3,409 of the cases were new.

At least 674,772 cases have been confirmed in the state and 69,457 of them were active Wednesday while 590,837 patients have recovered.

At least 3,249 patients were hospitalized statewide Wednesday, down slightly from Tuesday’s total, and in the two Trauma Service Areas that cover most of Central Texas, at least 75 were in hospitals, up seven from Tuesday.

“We are seeing a slight increase in hospital cases,” Dr. Richard Haskett of Ascension Providence Hospital in Waco said during a virtual news conference Wednesday.

Almost 5.3 million tests have been administered in Texas.

The Lab Reported positivity rate was 8.86% Wednesday, down slightly from 8.98% Tuesday.

Three Texas counties still remain free of the virus.

BELL COUNTY

Bell County reported 36 additional confirmed cases Wednesday, raising the total count to 5,149.

Of the total, 265 cases were active Wednesday and 4,809 patients have recovered.

The state count, which includes Fort Hood personnel who live on post, increased by 105 Wednesday to 5,219.

State data showed one additional death in the county Wednesday for a total of 77.

Bell County’s COVID-19 dashboard showed 75 deaths Wednesday.

Texas A&M University-Central Texas Wednesday was still reporting seven positive tests involving students and four involving faculty and staff since March.

The Killeen ISD’s online dashboard Wednesday showed 51 confirmed cases involving staff and six involving students since March 16. An active case involving a student was reported Wednesday at Bellaire Elementary; an active case involving a staff member was reported at Hay Branch Elementary; one active case involving an employee was reported at Hay Branch Elementary; one active case involving an employee was reported at Pershing Park Elementary; an active case involving an employee was reported at Reeces Creek Elementary; an active case involving a student was reported at West Ward Elementary; an active case involving a student was reported at Live Oak Ridge Middle School; an active case involving a student was reported at Venable Village Elementary; two active cases involving students were reported at Killeen High School, and one active case involving an employee at a non-campus facility was reported.

The Temple ISD’s online dashboard showed no confirmed cases Wednesday.

The Belton ISD’s online dashboard showed three confirmed cases Tuesday at North Belton Middle School and two at South Belton Middle school.

One student at Thomas Arnold Elementary School in Salado has tested positive for COVID-19, a district newsletter says.

BELL COUNTY COVID-19 DEATHS

MCLENNAN COUNTY

The Waco-McLennan County Health District reported 40 new cases of the virus Wednesday, raising the county’s total to 7,271.

Of the total, 520 cases were active and 6,660 patients have recovered.

The new cases include two residents who range in age from 1 to 10; one who ranges in age from 11 to 17; 18 who range in age from 18 to 25; two who range in age from 26 to 29; three in their 30s; five in their 40s; four in their 50s; two in their 60s; two in their 70s and one who is 80 or older.

Thirty nine patients were hospitalized Wednesday, 10 of them on ventilators.

Twenty nine of the 39 are McLennan County residents.

The virus has claimed the lives of 91 residents, according to local data, but state health officials reported a 92nd death Wednesday.

Local officials, during a virtual news conference, said signs now are generally favorable, but warned that fall activities that involve gatherings could have an impact on the trajectory of the virus.

And McLennan County Judge Scott Felton said jury trials are scheduled to resume on Oct. 1.

“We will see our positivity rate come down because of surveillance testing,” Waco Mayor Kyle Deaver said Wednesday.

“We might want to let our guard down but we can’t. I think that’s what happened in June when we saw that spike that took us four months to get back down,” he said.

Deaver said it appears residents are complying with the state mask mandate.

“I have not seen very many people out in about without masks. The code enforcement has responded to 49 cases with one citation issued. The police department has responded to 35 and issued no citations, but several warnings,” he said.

Baylor University’s online dashboard Wednesday showed 107 active cases of the virus. The total number of confirmed viruses since Aug. 1 rose by 16 to 974. Over the past seven days, 72 cases have been confirmed. The seven-day clinical positivity rate is 5.5%.

Baylor announced Wednesday spring classes will begin on Jan. 19, a week later than usual.

The university will not take a spring break in 2021.

The annual spring play day, Diadeloso, will be canceled.

The last day of classes will be April 28. Finals will finish on May 5.

The Waco ISD dashboard Wednesday showed three cumulative cases at Kendrick Elementary School; one case at Lake Air Montessori School; and one at University High School. University High School announced in a Facebook post Tuesday that its scrimmage Friday night against Waco High School won’t be open to the public.

The Midway ISD’s online dashboard Wednesday showed three active cases involving students at Midway High School; one involving a student at South Bosque Elementary School; one involving a student at Hewitt Elementary School; one involving a staff member at Spring Valley Elementary School; one involving a student and another involving a staff member at River Valley Intermediate School; and one involving a student at Midway Middle School.

Free COVID-19 testing will be available from 8 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Wednesday and Thursday at Toliver Chapel Missionary Baptist Church at 1402 Elm Ave. in Waco, for which online registration is required; from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 24 to Sept. 26 at the Waco Multipurpose Facility at 1020 Elm Ave. in Waco for which no registration is required; and from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Oct. 2 and Waco Fire Station No. 5 at 4515 Bagby Ave. for which online registration is required.

MCLENNAN COUNTY COVID-19 DEATHS

CORYELL COUNTY

Coryell County reported 615 confirmed cases of the virus Wednesday, an increase of 15 over the county’s last report.

Of the total 167 cases were active and 439 patients have recovered.

State data, which include Texas Department of Criminal Justice inmates, showed 1,777 active cases and 1,277 recoveries.

The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Wednesday was reporting 268 active cases involving inmates and 40 involving employees at the Christina Melton Crain Unit in Gatesville where 849 inmates were on medical restriction and 270 were isolated; 18 cases involving inmates and 65 involving employees at the Alfred D. Hughes Unit in Gatesville where 1,072 inmates were medically restricted and 22 were medically isolated; four cases involving employees at the Mountain View Unit in Gatesville; eight cases involving employees at the Dr. Lane Murray Unit in Gatesville, and one case involving an inmate and four cases involving employees at the Linda Woodman State Jail in Gatesville where one inmate was medically isolated

The Copperas Cove ISD’s online dashboard showed one case involving a staff member at Copperas Cove Junior High School; one case involving a staff member at Clements/Parsons Elementary School

The county’s death toll is 11, according to state data, but according to local data the virus has claimed nine lives in the county including a Copperas Cove man in his 70s who died on April 9 at Advent Hospital in Killeen, to which he was admitted on April 2; a Copperas Cove man in his 60s who was diagnosed with the virus on April 5; a Copperas Cove man whose death was reported on July 8, and a Gatesville man in his 60s whose death was reported on July 12.'

A free mobile test site will be open from noon to 8 p.m. Sept. 22 at the Copperas Cove Fire Department at 415 South Main St. Register online. Free testing is also available from noon to 8 p.m. on Sept. 24 at the Civic Center at 301 Veterans Memorial Dr. in Gatesville. ID is required.

The Cove House Free Clinic at 806 West Avenue D, Suite H, is offering free COVID-19 testing from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. Tuesdays. Appointments are required and may be made by calling (254) 289-9865.

LIMESTONE COUNTY

Limestone County reported six new cases Wednesday for a total of 536.

Of the total, 417 patients have recovered.

A 10th resident diagnosed with the virus has died, according to state data Wednesday.

The first was a Mexia woman in her late 50s to early 60s with underlying health conditions who died on March 31 at Parkview Regional Hospital in Mexia after she was diagnosed with COVID-19.

NAVARRO COUNTY

Navarro County reported 1,207 confirmed and 307 probable cases of the virus Tuesday for a total of 1,514.

Of the total, 110 cases were active and 1,373 patients have recovered.

Nine patients were hospitalized.

The county reported a 31st death Wednesday, but state data, based on death certificates and county of residence, showed 23 deaths.

OTHER COUNTIES

According to the latest figures Wednesday Bosque County was reporting 273 cases, an increase of four, and 209 recoveries. Revised state data based on death certificates showed six deaths in the county.

Falls County had 201 confirmed cases, an increase of 11, and 159 recoveries Wednesday. State data showed a fourth death. The Texas Department of Criminal Justice Wednesday reported four cases involving employees at the William P. Hobby Unit in Marlin. Eleven inmates were restricted at the Marlin Transfer Facility. Rosebud-Lott High School’s game Friday night against Johnson City has been canceled because of the virus.

Freestone County was reporting 397 cases Wednesday. Of the total, 342 patients have recovered. One case involving an employee was reported Wednesday at the William R. Boyd Unit in Teague where 69 inmates were on medical restriction. The county reported its first death from the virus on Aug. 31.

Hamilton County was reporting 110 confirmed cases Wednesday. A total of 96 patients have recovered. Four residents have died of the virus, according to state data.

Hill County reported a total of 570 cases Wednesday, an increase of 14, with 352 recoveries. A 13th resident has died, according to state data. Ten students and five staff members in the Hillsboro ISD have confirmed cases of the virus including three students and four staff members at Hillsboro Elementary School; six students at Hillsboro Intermediate School, one student at Hillsboro Junior High School, and one staff member at Hillsboro High School. Whitney High School parents were advised that two students have tested positive for the virus, one who was last on campus on Sept. 10 and one who was last one campus on Sept. 11.

Lampasas County was reporting 217 cases Wednesday, an increase of three, with 143 recoveries. An eighth resident diagnosed with the virus has died, according to state data. Football games between China Spring and Lampasas have been canceled because of the virus. The China Spring Middle School team was to have played Lampasas Thursday at home, the JV team was to have played Thursday in Lampasas and the varsity team was to have played Lampasas Friday night at home. Parents who purchased tickets will be reimbursed.

Leon County reported 225 confirmed cases, an increase of four, with 180 recoveries Wednesday. The virus has claimed five lives in the county, according to state data.

Milam County reported 476 cases Wednesday, an increase of five, 20 of which were active. A total of 451 patients have recovered. Five have died. Cameron High School’s football practice was canceled Monday after a student athlete tested positive for COVID-19, and on Wednesday the district announced it’s canceling Friday night’s game against Lexington and suspending varsity football activity for the rest of the week. JV and freshman games against Lake Belton are still scheduled for Thursday.

Mills County reported 46 cases with 33 recoveries Wednesday.

Robertson County had 284 confirmed cases Wednesday, an increase of three. Of that number, 245 patients have recovered. State data showed four deaths.

San Saba County reported 43 cases and 35 recoveries Wednesday. The TDCJ Tuesday reported one case involving an employee of the San Saba Transfer Facility.

COVID-19 INFORMATION, LINKS AND RESOURCES

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