Coryell County seeing “highest infection rate” since tracking began
By LYNETTE SOWELL
Coryell County Judge Roger Miller updated the county commissioners on the COVID-19 outlook within Coryell county.
“The numbers in Coryell County are going up at a concerning rate. Even more so (concerning) than that is the status of our local hospital as well as the hospitals in the region. We currently have two patients at Coryell Health that are COVID-positive that we are having to treat in our local hospital because they are not able to transfer those people to any of the hospitals within the region,” Miller told the commissioners.
He explained that hospital facilities in the state’s Trauma Service Area M, anchored by McLennan County, have exceeded Governor Greg Abbott’s mandated 15 percent COVID patient occupancy and thus cannot be allowed to perform elective surgeries until that area’s COVID inpatient rate is less than 15 percent for seven consecutive days. Also, Trauma Service Area L, which is anchored by Bell County and Baylor Scott & White in Temple and Seton in Harker Heights are at 5.9 percent for COVID-positive inpatient cases.
“That is the highest percentage they have been since the governor issued that order,” Miller said, adding that last week Baylor Scott & White in Temple scheduled no elective surgeries by choice, calling it an “in-house decision.”
Miller then focused on the increasing count in new cases since Nov. 1.
“As of Tuesday morning, if you start looking at the 1st of November, our weekly counts have been 66 in one week, 82 the following week, 131 last week, and from the 19th through the 24th, we’ve had 64 within that time period alone,” he added. Miller said that the numbers are based off the report from the Texas Department of State Health Services and run approximately seven days behind the actual testing date that he receives from Coryell Health.
“It is my estimation that we have approximately 100 more cases that have tested positive through Coryell Health that are not reflected on this report, and they will filter in,” Miller said.
“We certainly this month have seen the highest infection rate since we have been tracking numbers, to even include the July timeframe,” Miller said. “Where we are really seeing the impact is with the healthcare system. That’s the true impact.”
Miller said that one long-term care facility in the county has had at least 11 patients plus as many of its staff, “if not more,” who have tested positive within the past week. Those patients are being transferred to partnering care facilities taking care of COVID patients.
On Monday, active cases of COVID-19 reached an all-time high within the city of Copperas Cove as of Monday, with an overall increase of 60 active cases for the previous seven days, according to Copperas Cove Deputy Fire Chief/Emergency Management Coordinator Gary Young.
On Tuesday, Texas saw the largest one-day increase in new positive cases, with 13,998 new cases. There were 162 additional fatalities, bringing the number to 20,750.
Active cases have risen to 169,826.