The Tarrant County Public Health Department confirms 1,825 new cases of COVID-19 Thursday along with another 16 new deaths. TCPH is also reporting more than 1,000 people are hospitalized in the county with the virus including more than 200 in ICUs.
In the last seven days, the county has announced 10,769 new cases of the virus. Of the 1,825 additional cases reported Thursday, data from the county health department indicates there are 1,374 more confirmed cases than the most recent report and 451 more probable cases.
The latest 16 victims included a woman from Bedford in her 90s, a man from Crowley in his 90s, a man and woman from Fort Worth in their 80s, a woman from Euless in her 80s, a man and woman from Fort Worth in their 70s, a woman from Benbrook in her 70s, a man from Lake Worth in his 70s, a man from unincorporated Tarrant County in his 70s, a man from Crowley in his 70s, a man from Kennedale in his 60s, a woman from Crowley in her 50s, a man from Fort Worth in his 40s a man from Hurst in his 40s, a man from Sansom Park in his 40s. All but three had underlying health conditions.
Tarrant County, which extended its mask mandate until Feb. 28, 2021, last month, began reporting both probable and confirmed cases of COVID-19 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 110,647 confirmed cases of the virus and 15,598 probable cases for a total of 126,245 cases.
The county is also reporting another 1,459 estimated recoveries, bringing the total number of survivors to 91,836. There are currently an estimated 33,354 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 reported Thursday 1,013 COVID-19 patients were occupying hospital beds in the county through Wednesday, which accounts for nearly 20% of capacity; TCPH said 213 of those patients were in ICUs.
Stephen Love, president of the DFW Hospital Council, told NBC 5 Thursday there were 2,859 lab-confirmed COVID-19 patients in hospitals in the 19-county TSA-E area. Love said COVID-19 patients make up 18.2% of the inpatient bed capacity and approximately 40% of the ICU capacity. Love said there are about 16 free ICU beds in Dallas County and 34 in Tarrant County.
"We continue to experience daily increases in our COVID-19 census in our hospitals and urge people to please wear masks, physical distance, stay out of large crowds and wash your hands frequently. While we are thankful for the vaccines, we have a long way to go to vaccinate the entire population and we can’t let our guard down," Love said. "The next six months are so important as all of us need to make sacrifices, especially over the upcoming holidays, so let’s do our part to tamp down this infection. We must limit our holiday activities to minimize the spread of COVID-19.“
With 1,055 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.