Tarrant County on Monday added 265 new fatalities related to COVID-19 that had gone unreported between April and November, health officials say.
The delay in reporting was down to a change in the way the Texas Department of State Health Services reported deaths, the county explained Monday in a news release. The state used the cause of death reported on patients' death certificates, which Tarrant County did not have immediate access to.
"As Tarrant County did not immediately have access to death certificate information, death reporting in Tarrant County continued to be based upon death notification provided by healthcare providers. This change requires jurisdictional and COVID disease status verification," the county said.
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The 265 deaths were counted from a review of 1,000 records from between April and November, the county said.
Tarrant County as of Monday has reported a total of 1,362 COVID-19 deaths since the pandemic began.
The county added 1,494 new cases of the disease Monday. Of the cases reported Monday, 1,332 were confirmed while 162 are probable.
The county 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 115,949 confirmed cases of the virus and 16,642 probable cases for a total of 132,591 cases.
The county is also reporting another 1,101 estimated recoveries, bringing the total number of survivors to 97,349.
Of the county's cases, 72% of those who have died were over the age of 65. Those aged 25 to 44 make up the largest percentage of people with COVID-19 at 35%.
The health department reports 1,110 COVID-19 patients are currently occupying hospital beds in the county -- about 22% of capacity. A month ago, on Nov. 20 COVID-19 patients occupied about 14% of Tarrant County hospital beds.