Dallas County added another 2,292 new confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 Wednesday along with 15 more deaths attributed to the virus.
County health officials said there were 989 COVID-19 patients in acute care in Dallas County hospitals through Tuesday, a slight drop from the day before.
Of the cases reported Monday, the county said 1,965 were confirmed cases and 327 were probable (antigen test) cases, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in the county from March to 170,747 and the number of probable (antigen test) cases to 20,797. The total of confirmed and probable cases in the county is now at 191,544. Over the last seven days, Dallas County officials have confirmed 12,126 confirmed and probable cases of the virus.
"We continue to see an increase in the daily average of new cases and the positivity rate as shown in the CDC Week 51 summary from DCHHS," Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins said in a statement. "We're now at an all-time high for the average of new daily cases as we head into another holiday weekend."
The 15 latest victims include a man in his 20s from Dallas and a woman in her 40s from Irving, both of whom died in emergency rooms. The remaining victims ranged in age from their 50s to their 90s and were from Dallas, Irving, Cedar Hill, Mesquite and Garland.
County officials said Tuesday there have been 1,611 deaths in the county attributed to the virus. 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 51 was 1,787, which represents a rate of 67.8 daily new cases per 100,000 residents.
In the last 30 days, there have been 5,971 COVID-19 cases in school-aged children and staff reported from more than 756 separate K-12 schools in Dallas County, including 569 staff members. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 21 school nurses have been diagnosed with COVID-19.
Jenkins, on Monday, issued a warning for those who planned traditional gatherings on New Year's Eve, urging them to reconsider their plans and to take precautions against spreading the virus.
"To help our healthcare heroes help you, please make smart decisions and follow doctors’ advice this New Year’s season. Wear your mask when around people you don’t live with and avoid crowds and get-togethers. We must all think of ways to celebrate the New Year that are safe, not just for us, but for those who will inevitably catch the virus from the people who contract it this New Year’s," Jenkins said. "It may not be you, but your grandmother or someone else’s grandmother who pays a heavy toll for your decision to have a traditional New Year’s celebration. Please help make the small sacrifice of patriotism to keep our community and our country strong until everyone who wants the vaccine can get it and it can have its opportunity to protect them from the virus."