The Tarrant County Public Health Department confirms 1,302 new cases of COVID-19 Wednesday along with three more deaths, bringing the county's total number of confirmed and probable cases of the virus to nearly 96,000 with 838 fatalities.
In the last seven days, the county has announced 10,230 new cases of the virus. Of the additional cases reported Wednesday, data from the county health department indicates there are 1,143 more confirmed cases than the day before and 159 more probable cases.
The three latest victims of the virus include a man from Mansfield in his 80s, a man from Fort Worth in his 70s, and a man from Arlington in his 60s. All had underlying health conditions.
Tarrant County, which extended its mask mandate until Feb. 28, 2021, on Tuesday, began reporting both probable and confirmed cases in August at the request of the state health department. Probable cases, the county said, account for a variety of real-world situations and could highlight cases in the community that may otherwise go unreported. To date, the county has reported 85,010 confirmed cases of the virus and 10,979 probable cases for a total of 95,989 cases.
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The county is also reporting another 653 estimated recoveries, bringing the total number of survivors to 67,595. There are currently an estimated 27,556 active cases in the county, the most of any North Texas county.
Of the county's cases, 71% of those who have died were over the age of 65 even though they only make up 10% of the cases. Those aged 25 to 44 make up the largest percentage of people with COVID-19 at 36%.
The health department reports 812 COVID-19 patients are currently occupying hospital beds in the county on Wednesday -- about 16% of capacity and a jump of 32 patients compared to Monday. TCPH data shows 807 ventilators on hand with 522 being available; of the 285 in use, it's not clear how many are in use by COVID-19 patients.
Officials at the county's public health department will not be providing updated COVID-19 numbers on Thursday, Friday or Saturday, due to the Thanksgiving holiday, and will resume normal reporting on Sunday.
Last week, Tarrant County Public Health issued a public health warning that recommended things like avoiding non-essential travel and large gatherings. It is not a mandate or order.
With 838 deaths now attributed to the virus, COVID-19 is now projected to be the third-leading killer of Tarrant County residents behind cancer and heart disease and is expected to surpass the annual total for stroke later this year.
COVID-19 causes a respiratory illness with cough, fever and shortness of breath and may lead to bronchitis, severe pneumonia or even death. For more information go to coronavirus.tarrantcounty.com or call the Tarrant County Public Health information line, 817-248-6299, 24 hours a day, seven days a week.