Roller Coaster Ride of COVID-19 Continues

Update Feb. 4

By Will Johnson

Messenger Reporter

EAST TEXAS – Last week, it was reported a surge in the number of COVID-19 cases had caused a shortage of ICU beds across the state of Texas. This week, however, it is being reported the number of new cases may have crested and is on a downhill trajectory.

A Feb. 2 article published by the Texas Tribune stated, “After an anxious January marked by a wave of COVID-19 infections that pushed Texas hospitals and intensive care units to their limits, the number of Texans in the hospital with COVID-19 across the state has been in a steady decline for about a week, according to state health data.”

The article went on to state, “The decrease is the latest in a series of hopeful signs that the surge driven by the highly contagious omicron variant may be starting to abate, forecasters and health officials say.”

Across the state of Texas, the Texas Department of State Health Services (TxDSHS) reported 22,694 newly confirmed cases of COVID-19 along with 323 related fatalities, on Thursday, Feb. 3.

In addition, the TxDSHS indicated on Feb. 3, there were 386 confirmed cases in Houston County with approximately 3,015 people who have recovered. There have also been 98 reported deaths. On Jan. 27, there were 353 active cases and 96 deaths.

The first cases of COVID-19 were reported in Houston County on April 17, 2020, when it was learned three individuals had tested positive for the virus.

Meanwhile, in Anderson County, it was announced on Thursday, Feb. 3 the county had a total of 1,322 active cases. There have also been 5,753 recoveries and 117 reported deaths. On Jan. 27, there were 1,198 active cases and 115 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 cumulative fatalities per county – for those counties surrounding Houston and Anderson Counties – as of Feb. 3 showed: Angelina – 1,407 active cases and 445 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 1,159 active cases with 440 fatalities; Cherokee – 786 active cases and 234 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 650 active cases with 231 fatalities; Freestone – 362 active cases and 80 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 317 active cases with 80 fatalities; Henderson – 4,759 active cases and 379 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 3,763 active cases with 370 fatalities; Leon – 406 active cases and 80 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 339 active cases with 77 fatalities; Madison – 324 active cases and 49 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 322 active cases with 49 fatalities; Trinity –342 active cases and 67 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 306 active cases with 67 fatalities; and Walker – 3,699 active cases and 199 fatalities, on Jan. 27 there were 3,306 active cases with 197 fatalities.

The Messenger first started tracking the spread of the virus in the East Texas area on Wednesday, March 25, 2020. 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 Feb. 3, 2022, over 5.25 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 had been reported in Texas while 78,981 (on Jan. 20 – 77,555) 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 Feb. 3 update showed a total of 57,708,608 Coronavirus tests had been administered in Texas with 11,673 current hospitalizations, down from 13,360 on Jan. 27. There have also been 43,287,971 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 Feb. 3, the positivity rate was 25.59%, down significantly from Jan. 27 when the rate stood at 31.87%.

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 Feb. 4, across the US there have been 75,997,123 confirmed cases of COVID-19 – an increase of 2,552,453 from Jan. 27.

The CSSE further reported there were 897,400 US residents who had suffered a COVID-19 related death as of Feb. 4 – an increase of 18,784 fatalities from Jan. 28. So far in the US, 538,682,130 vaccine doses have been administered.

Worldwide, on Feb. 4, as of 9:21 am, there have been 388,883,686 (on Jan. 28 – 367,332,788) confirmed cases of COVID-19 with 5,715,462 (on Jan. 28 – 5,640,818) deaths attributed to the virus. The CDC, WHO and the CSSE are also reporting 10,023,312,361 vaccine doses have been administered.

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

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