AUSTIN, Texas – Texas continued to report more than 10,000 patients hospitalized with the coronavirus Monday as the state tries containing the spread in what has become one of America's biggest hot zones.
As Republican Gov. Greg Abbott warns that the worst is yet to come in Texas, state health officials reported more than 40 new deaths and 5,600 new cases following what had been the deadliest week of the pandemic in the state. There is typically a decline in numbers following a weekend, when reporting from counties is slower.
The true number of cases is likely far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected and not feel sick.
County leaders in the hard-hit Rio Grande Valley on Monday asked Abbott to give them broader emergency powers as hospitals exceed capacity. Top officials in Houston have also called for stay-at-home orders, while Abbott has said putting Texas back on lockdown is a last resort.
In order to help combat the growing surge of coronavirus cases in the state, a U.S. Army medical task force arrived in Houston Monday. The 85-member task force comprises of medical and support professionals from the Army Reserve who will help local health care efforts. This is the second Army task force to come to Texans’ aid and several more teams will be headed to the state in the coming weeks, officials say.
Texas: The 7-day rolling average positivity rate is 16.85% on Monday which has risen from 14.46% on Friday
Houston: The rolling average positivity rate is 27% on Monday which has risen from 25% on Friday
Texas: There were 5,655 new cases reported in Texas Monday bringing the state’s total to 264,313. There were also 43 new deaths reported Monday.
Houston: Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner announced 1,544 new cases bringing the city’s total to 30,965. He also announced eight new deaths. (These numbers do not include Harris County)
For most people, the new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.