Local COVID-19 Death Toll Continues to Rise

Update Sept. 17

By Will Johnson

Messenger Reporter

EAST TEXAS – In a recent article published by CNN, it was stated more than 75 million eligible Americans are still not vaccinated, while hospitals in many states are overwhelmed as fears continue to escalate that the number of cases could increase tremendously in the fall.

On Thursday, Sept. 9, National Institute for Allergy and Infectious Disease Director Dr. Anthony Fauci stated, “The one thing that we do know for sure… 160,000 cases a day is not where we want to be.  Unfortunately, that is where we are right now.”

Across the Lone Star State, the TxDSHS reported another 14,931 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 along with 372 related fatalities on Thursday, Sept. 16.

In addition, the TxDSHS indicated on Sept. 16, there were 198 estimated, active cases in Houston County with approximately 2,353 people who have recovered. There have also been 68 reported deaths. Last week, there were 245 active cases and 64 deaths.

The first cases of COVID-19 were reported in Houston County on April 17 of last year, when it was learned three individuals had tested positive for the virus.

Meanwhile, in Anderson County, it was announced on Thursday, Sept. 16 the county had a total of 1,108 active cases. There have also been 3,854 recoveries and 91 reported deaths. Last week, there were 677 active cases and 87 deaths.

On Tuesday, March 31, 2020, it was reported Anderson County had its first confirmed case of the virus.

The number of active cases and fatalities per county – for those counties surrounding Houston and Anderson Counties – as of Sept. 16 showed: Angelina – 1,534 active cases and 334 fatalities, last week there were 1,475 active cases with 323 fatalities; Cherokee – 274 active cases and 170 fatalities, last week there were 390 active cases with 162 fatalities; Freestone –223 active cases and 58 fatalities, last week there were 216 active cases with 57 fatalities; Henderson – 1,565 active cases and 267 fatalities, last week there were 1,448 active cases with 246 fatalities; Leon – 250 active cases and 53 fatalities, last week there were 249 active cases with 52 fatalities; Madison – 115 active cases and 40 fatalities, last week there were 139 active cases with 36 fatalities; Trinity – 165 active cases and 45 fatalities, last week there were 183 active cases with 42 fatalities; and Walker – 427 active case and 154 fatalities, last week there were 624 active cases with 150 fatalities.

The Messenger first started tracking the spread of the virus in the East Texas area on Wednesday, March 25 of last year. At that time, TxDSHS reported 974 confirmed cases of the Coronavirus Disease and 12 deaths throughout the Lone Star State.

Also, on that Wednesday, the TxDSHS indicated 82 out of 254 counties in the state of Texas had at least one confirmed case of COVID-19. Of those counties – as of March 25, 2020 – the only county with a confirmed case of the Coronavirus bordering Houston or Anderson County was Walker County.

By Sept. 16, 2021, over 3.25 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 had been reported in Texas while 59,980 (last week 57,932) Texans had suffered a COVID-19 related death. Furthermore, 254 out of 254 – or 100% of counties in the state of Texas – now have at least one active case of COVID-19.

The Sept. 16 update showed a total of 40,189,765 Coronavirus tests had been administered in Texas with 12,597 current hospitalizations, down from 13,486 last week. In addition, the TxDSHS reported 3,461,454 recoveries. There have also been 31,378,670 vaccine doses given in Texas.

Another metric touted by state officials has been the positivity rate. The positivity rate is found by dividing the number of new cases (previous 7 days) by the number of new test results (previous 7 days).

On Sept. 16, the positivity rate was 15.32 %, up from last week when the rate stood at 14.85%.

Moving to the national stage, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), along with the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering (CSSE), as of Sept. 17, across the US there have been 41,810,387 confirmed cases of COVID-19 – an increase of 1,184,666 from a week ago.

The CSSE further reported there were 670,447 US residents who had suffered a COVID-19 related death as of Sept. 17 – an increase of 15,641 fatalities from a week ago. So far in the US, 376,273,100 vaccine doses have been administered.

Worldwide, on Sept. 17, as of 10:21 am, there have been 227,248,986 (last week – 223,369,412) confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 4,673,732 (last week – 4,608,983) deaths attributed to the virus. The CDC, WHO and the CSSE are also reporting 5,848,695,269 vaccine doses have been administered.

Will Johnson may be contacted via e-mail at [email protected].   

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