Hopkins County/Sulphur Springs Emergency Management officials, in the Dec. 2 COVID-19 update, reported a decrease in the patient count in the hospital COVID Unit and reported another nearly 4,650 people have been tested at the free testing site since it opened.
Texas Department of State Health Services’ COVID-19 dashboard and Fatalities Over Time By County reports on Dec. 2 showed a 54th COVID-19 death for Hopkins County and showed COVID-19 hospitalizations continued to account for more than 15 percent of the overall hospital capacity for the fifth consecutive day in Trauma Service Area F.
COVID-19 Case & Fatality Counts
The DSHS dashboard on Dec. 2 showed a total of 844 Hopkins County residents (2.28 percent of the population) have received positive molecular COVID-19 results since March, that’s 11 new cases reported on Dec. 2, bringing the total to a dozen new cases so far this month.
On the other hand, DSHS also reported some Hopkins County recoveries for the first time in 23 days. On Dec. 2, 80 of the Hopkins County residents who received positive COVID-19 results were reported to have recovered from the virus. That’s only two shy of the total number of recoveries reported during the entire month of November. COVID-19 recoveries were reported for Hopkins County only three times last month: 19 on Nov. 2, 21 on Nov. 6 and 42 on Nov. 9. The 80 recoveries reported Wednesday for Hopkins County increases the overall number of recoveries since March to 771.
Unfortunately, another Hopkins County COVID-19 fatality has been confirmed by death certificate, according to DSHS. That makes 2 Hopkins County COVID deaths reported this week. Both Hopkins County deaths were reported to have occurred in November, one on Nov. 20 and the other on Nov. 22. That makes 7 Hopkins County residents who are confirmed to have died in November from COVID-19 and 54 Hopkins County COVID-19 deaths since March. That’s a fatality rate of 6.4 percent among residents who have tested positive for COVID-19 since March, and 0.15 percent of the estimated population.
Texas Health and Human Services nursing facility reports attribute 38 Hopkins County COVID-19 deaths as being from nursing homes. Carriage House Manor has reported 24 resident COVID-19 deaths, while Sulphur Springs Health and Rehabilitation and Sulphur Springs Nursing & Rehab had reported seven COVID-19 deaths each through Nov. 18, the most recent data available for the facilities.
The 11 new cases, 80 recoveries and 1 death reported Dec. 2 reduce the overall active COVID-19 case count in Hopkins County from 90 on Tuesday to 19 on Wednesday, Dec. 2. That’s the fewest number of active cases on any one day since Sept. 9, when 16 active cases were reported. The next closest was 22 Sept. 10–11 and 29 on Sept. 16, according to the DSHS Active COVID-19 Cases by County.
According to the Dec. 2 Health and Human Services licensed child care centers, school-age programs, and before- or after-school programs report on facility in Hopkins County had reported one active COVID-19 case. Little Texans Learning Center on Dec. 1 reported one employee had tested positive for COVID-19.
HC/SSEM in the Dec. 5 COVID-19 update also reported a total of 4649 molecular COVID-19 tests have been performed at 128-A Jefferson St. since the free testing site opened on Sept. 25, including 118 on Tuesday and 150 on Monday.
Free COVID-19 tests will continue to be offered Monday-Friday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. at 128-A Jefferson St. To register for the free oral swab test, go online to www.GoGetTested.com, select the Sulphur Springs location and follow the prompts. Testing is free and available to anyone , adult or child, regardless of symptoms, exposure or county of residence. However, an adult age 18 will be required to register and sign a consent form allowing the specimen to be collected and evaluated at a lab and notifications made regarding results.
The number of patients in the COVID-19 unit at CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital-Sulphur Springs declined by two patients for the second consecutive day in a row, starting at 25 on Monday, 23 Tuesday and 21 Wednesday, HC/SSEM reported in the Dec. 2 COVID-19 update. CMFH-SS has the capacity to fill up to 35 beds as part of the COVID unit.
Trauma Service Area F, which includes Hopkins County and most of Northeast Texas, had a minor decline in COVID-19 hospitalizations on Dec. 2 as well. However, COVID-19 hospitalizations in December are the highest reported so far in TSA G. While 9,109 COVID-19 hospitalizations have been climbing steadily since September, they haven’t quite reached the 10,893 reported on July 22.
In TSA F, COVID-19 hospitalizations accounted for 16.32 percent of the total hospital capacity and 27.8 percent of all hospitalizations on Dec. 2. That’s down from Dec. 1, when COVID-19 hospitalizations accounted for 16.4 percent of the total hospital capacity and 28.5 percent of all hospitalizations in TSA F.
Dec. 2 marks the fifth consecutive day and sixth day out the last 7 in which the COVID 19- hospitalizations exceeded 15 percent of the total hospital capacity in TSA F: 15.01 percent on Nov. 26, 14.84 percent on Nov. 27, 15.76 percent on Nov. 28, 16.25 percent on Nov. 29, 16 percent on Nov. 30, 16.4 percent on Dec. 1 and 16.32 on Dec. 2.
Statewide, COVID-19 hospitalizations make up 13.8 percent of the total hospital capacity and 18.7 percent of all hospitalizations in Texas on Dec. 2. That’s come down a little from the the numbers posted the last four days, when COVID-19 hospitalizations accounted for 19.3 percent of all hospitalizations in Texas on Nov. 28, 19.6 percent on Nov. 29, 20 percent on Nov. 30, 19.5 percent Dec. 1. COVID-19 hospitalization accounted for 13.4 percent of the total hospital capacity on Nov. 28, 13.6 percent on Nov. 29, 14 percent on Nov. 30 and 14 percent Dec. 1.
The state monitors the total percent of COVID-19 hospitalizations out of total hospital capacity in each TSA. Those that exceed 15 percent for 7 consecutive days are subject to more strenuous measures, including scaling back certain business capacities from 75 to 50 percent, and could require some businesses that don’t meet certain criteria to close or reduce capacity even more in accordance with GA-32.
Currently, there are 6 TSAs, where for the last seven days, 15% or more of total hospital capacity has been COVID‑19 patients. Executive Order GA-32 does allow counties in TSAs with high hospitalizations to choose to operate at 75% capacity if the county has minimal COVID-19 cases, defined as fewer than 30 new confirmed cases in the last 14 days. Of the more than 70 counties in these six TSAs, only 20
Currently, there are 6 TSAs, where for the last seven days, 15% or more of total hospital capacity has been COVID‑19 patients. Executive Order GA-32 does allow counties in TSAs with high hospitalizations to choose to operate at 75% capacity if the county has minimal COVID-19 cases, defined as fewer than 30 new confirmed cases in the last 14 days. Of the more than 70 counties in these six TSAs, only 20 have qualified for and submitted an attestation to operate at 75 percent, according to DSHS.