For the fourth consecutive day, the percentage of patients hospitalized with COVID-19 in North Texas rose above 15% Monday — the mark set by Gov. Greg Abbott that would trigger a rollback of relaxed restrictions.
Per Abbott's executive order, which went into effect Oct. 14, if the number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 exceeds 15% of all patients in a designated Trauma Service Area for seven straight days, bars will be forced to close and all other businesses must reduce capacity from 75% to 50%.
According to a different executive order, hitting the mark would also put a halt to elective surgeries.
The Dallas-Fort Worth area is in Trauma Service Area E, which includes 19 counties: Collin, Cooke, Dallas, Denton, Ellis, Erath, Fannin, Grayson, Hood, Hunt, Johnson, Kaufman, Navarro, Palo Pinto, Parker, Rockwall, Somervell, Tarrant and Wise.
While some individual counties in TSA E exceeded 15% before Friday, the seven-day count doesn't begin until the whole region surpasses the number.
The North Texas Trauma Service Area was at 14.87% Thursday, before climbing to 15.05% Friday, 15.63% Saturday, 15.62% Sunday and 16.13% Monday.
There are already six Trauma Service Areas that have surpassed 15% capacity for seven or more days — the regions centered around Amarillo, Lubbock, El Paso, Midland-Odessa, Laredo and Waco.
Trauma Service Area M, which included Bosque County, Falls County, Hill County, Limestone County and McLennan County, were notified Sunday that they had topped 15% for seven days and must dial back occupancy levels at area businesses.
Other regions that had been above 15% for at least one day on Sunday were centered around Abilene, San Angelo, Texarkana, Tyler, Victoria and Waco. Meanwhile, the Beaumont region was at 14.03% Sunday.