Dec. 22 COVID-19 Update: 47 Recoveries, 28 In COVID Unit, 3 New Probable Cases

While there were no new confirmed molecular cases reported for Hopkins County on Tuesday, there were 47 recoveries, three new probable cases and a new record patient count in the hospital COVID Unit, according to Texas Department of State Health Service’s Dec. 22 COVID-19 dashboards and Hopkins County/Sulphur Springs Emergency Management’s Dec. 22 COVID-19 update.

Case Counts

DSHS’s Dec. 22 COVID-19 Case Counts dashboard again showed 1,043 Hopkins County residents have received positive COVID-19 molecular test results since March, the same as was reported on Monday for Hopkins County.

While there were no new molecular positive results reported on Dec. 22, that doesn’t mean there were no new cases. Three probable cases were reported Tuesday, increasing the total so far this week to 15 new probable cases. That makes 133 new probable cases reported since the state began reporting the data daily alongside confirmed molecular cases on Dec. 11. Overall, that’s 1,056 probable cases reported for Hopkins County since the county began tracking the information.

Smiley face

For the first time in three days new patient recoveries were reported. On the Dec. 22 COVID-19 Case Counts dashboard, 47 Hopkins County residents had recovered from COVID-19. That makes 1,209 recoveries this month, including 810 probable case recoveries not previously reported in the daily counts until Dec. 11 when the total number of recoveries, both confirmed and probable, were totaled. That makes a total of 1,903 of the 2,099 confirmed and probable cases who have recovered, according to the DSHS data.

DSHS in the Weekly COVID-19 County Profile reported 260 new COVID-19 cases from Dec. 7-20, a 20 percent increase from the previous two-week report period. While DSHS did not provide a chart this week with all of the age breakdowns for new cases reported from Dec. 7-20, the state health agency reported that every age group had an increase except for ages 0-3 and 18-19-year-olds. Twenty-six of new cases were from school-aged cases, up from 19 school-aged cases the previous two weeks, DSHS reported.

Overall, the recoveries more than offset the new cases this week, decreasing the active case count from 172 cases on Dec. 21 to 128 cases Tuesday. That’s the least number of active cases in a week, as it’s one less than on Dec. 16, but still 29 more than on Dec. 15 and 109 more active cases than on Dec. 2.

COVID-19 Vaccine Update

The DSHS/Texas Heath and Human Services Vaccine Data dashboard showed 235,050 doses of COVID-19 vaccine had been delivered to vaccine providers in 215 of Texas’ 254 counties. The first of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine had been administered to a total of 60,631 people in Texas by 11:59 p.m. Dec. 21, including five people in Hopkins County, DSHS reported Tuesday.

Front-line healthcare workers and residents of long-term care facilities are the first Texans to receive the vaccine, in Phase 1A. Vaccines began being distributed across the state and country on Dec. 14. A few approved providers in Hopkins County received their first doses of the Moderna vaccine this week. DSHS encourages Phase 1A healthcare workers to contact their employers to find out more about available vaccinations. DSHS recommends residents of long-term care facilities contact their caretaker about the vaccine.

Map showing by color and and county the number of COVID-19 vaccines administered by 11:59 p.m. Dec. 21, according to the DSHS/HHS COVID-19 dashboard

On Dec. 23, Texas will continue to receive and distribute doses of the Pfizer and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines statewide to hospitals, pharmacies, local health departments, freestanding ERs and other clinics.

Phase 1B vaccine recipients are expected to be able to get the vaccine starting in January 2021. These include people 65 years of age and older, and people over age 16 with at least one chronic medical condition that puts them at greater risk, DSHS reported on Dec. 22.

More information about the vaccine, including distribution phases and tiers, can be found at on the DSHS Vaccine Data dashboard.

COVID-19 Test Data

Hopkins County/Sulphur Springs Emergency Management officials, in the Dec. 22 COVID-19 update, reported a total of 6,248 COVID-19 tests have been performed at the testing center at 128-A Jefferson Street from Sept. 25 to Dec. 21, including 183 tests conducted on Monday.

DSHS, in the Dec. 22 COVID-19 Test and Hospital Data dashboard, reported a total of 12,977 COVID-19 tests had been conducted in Hopkins County through Dec. 21: 10,826 viral or molecular (PCR) tests, 1,024 antigen tests and 1,127 antibody tests.

Dec. 22 COVID-19 testing totals for Hopkins County

Hospital Reports

The patient count in the COVID-19 unit at CHRISTUS Mother Frances Hospital-Sulphur Springs reached a new high of 28 patients. Previously the most patients reported in the COVID unit was 26 on Dec. 14. The increase marked the third consecutive day in which the patients counts have increases in the COVID-19 Unit. The hospital made some adjustments last month so that, if necessary, as many as 35 COVID-19 patients can be treated at CMFH-SS at one time.

On Dec. 22, there were 10,299 lab-confirmed COVID-19 patients in Texas hospitals, including the 28 CMFH-SS patients. Across Trauma Service Area F, which includes Hopkins County and nearly all of Northeast Texas, there were 159 COVID-19 hospitalizations, five more than on Dec. 21, 11 more than on Dec. 20, and 21 more than on Dec. 19. That’s the most COVID-19 patients reported in the last 10 days. Overall, COVID-19 patients accounted for 14.83 percent of the total hospital capacity in TSA F.

TSA F had a total of 1,072 staffed hospital beds on Tuesday, four more than on Monday and 14 more tan on Sunday. Overall, there were 620 total hospitalizations in the TSA, six more than on Dec. 21 and 13 more than on Dec. 20. There also were 980 staffed inpatients beds in TSA F, four more than on Monday and 14 more than on Sunday, but still 10 less than Saturday and 31 less than on Dec. 18.

TSA F reported only eight ICU beds available in hospitals across the area, one more than Monday, two more than Sunday, three less than on Saturday. Also available in TSA F on Tuesday were 77 ventilators, the same as on Dec. 21, one less than Dec. 20, nine more than on Dec. 19 and 14 more than on Dec. 18. A total of 360 hospital beds were available in TSA F on Dec. 22, two less than on Monday but one less than on Sunday and 46 less than on Dec. 12.

Author: KSST Contributor

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