Dallas County added another 2,088 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday along with 30 more deaths attributed to the virus.
Of the cases reported Thursday, the county said 1,717 were confirmed cases and 371 were probable (antigen test) cases, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the county from March to 139,950 and the number of probable (antigen test) cases to 14,426. Over the last seven days, Dallas County officials have confirmed 11,037 confirmed and probable cases of the virus.
"These numbers are yet again a grim reminder of the need for shared sacrifice and patriotism from everyone as we work to keep our community and our country strong until the vaccine is widely administered and we can achieve the 'herd immunity' that will only be available when the vast majority of Americans have been vaccinated," Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said in a news release announcing the latest report.
Jenkins told NBC 5 Thursday that the county is making preparations to distribute the first doses of the vaccine. Dr. Philip Huang, Dallas County Director of Health and Human Services, said we would not likely see widespread vaccine availability to the general public until 2021, between July and October.
The 30 latest victims' ages ranged from the 50s to 90s and were in Irving, Dallas, Seagoville, DeSoto, Mesquite, Garland, Duncanville and Garland. A total of 25 of the 30 reported fatalities had underlying health issues. All had been hospitalized with the exception of a woman in her 80s who died at a long-term care facility in Dallas.
County officials said Thursday there have been 1,299 confirmed deaths in the county attributed to the virus and another 48 probable deaths. In the summer, Dallas County Health and Human Services Director Dr. Philip Huang said COVID-19 is the third leading cause of death in the county behind diseases of the heart and cancers.
The county said that the provisional 7-day average for new confirmed and probable cases by date of a test collection for CDC week 48 was 1,117, which represents a rate of 42.4 daily new cases per 100,000 residents.
Over the past 30 days, there have been 4,520 COVID-19 cases in school-aged children and staff reported from 735 separate K-12 schools in Dallas County, including 681 staff members.
"Please everyone, do your part and stay in the fight by practicing good self-care," Jenkins said. "I'm thankful for you and the smart decision I know you will make as we work together to protect our community and our country at this time of high spread."