SAN ANTONIO — Even with the arrival of colder weather, October didn't live up to its frightful reputation when it comes to a waning coronavirus pandemic.
Bexar County saw a daily average of just 121 new COVID-19 cases over the course of the month, down from 414 in September. It marks the third straight month of lowering case counts following July's moderate virus surge, which could end up being the last endured in the San Antonio area.
Just 68 new cases were reported Tuesday, good for one of the lowest counts since the summer began. The seven-day case average has now been below 100 for six straight days – a stretch not seen since mid-April – while virus-related hospitalizations for the area have fallen by 78% since August 1, when the community started recovering from the July surge.
There were 75 local patients hospitalized for their symptoms on Tuesday, eight of which were in intensive care. Three patients were using ventilators to help them breathe.
Metro Health continues to provide no-cost COVID-19 vaccines at pop-up clinics and health fairs, and is set to resume them on Thursday.
In all, at least 5,419 Bexar County residents have died from COVID-19 complications while more than 649,000 infections have been reported, although the number of at-home tests that went unreported to Metro Health likely numbers in the thousands.
How Bexar County is trending
Vaccine progress in Bexar County
The following numbers are provided by San Antonio Metro Health. A full breakdown can be found here.
- 1,481,332 eligible Bexar County residents are fully vaccinated as of Oct. 10, which is about 74% of the total population over 6 months old.
- 591,339 eligible Bexar County residents have received a COVID-19 booster shot as of Oct. 10, which is 40% percent of the population over 4 years old.
The CDC states that "when a high percentage of the community is immune to a disease (through vaccination and/or prior illness)," that community will have reached herd immunity, "making the spread of this disease from person to person unlikely."
The City of San Antonio breaks down the vaccination rates by zip code on Metro Health's Vaccination Statistics page.
Coronavirus in Texas
The total number of coronavirus cases in the state grew by 1,159 on Monday, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services. That total includes 752 new confirmed cases and 407 new probable cases. More details can be found on this page.
Monday's figures bring the total number of Texans diagnosed with COVID-19 to more than 7.92 million.
Meanwhile, one more Texan has died from virus complications, the state reported Monday, raising the statewide death toll to 89,593. The latest daily figures, for Tuesday, weren't yet released by state officials.
The symptoms of coronavirus can be similar to the flu or a bad cold. Symptoms include fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, and diarrhea, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Most healthy people will have mild symptoms. A study of more than 72,000 patients by the Centers for Disease Control in China showed 80 percent of the cases there were mild.
But infections can cause pneumonia, severe acute respiratory syndrome, kidney failure, and even death, according to the World Health Organization. Older people with underlying health conditions are most at risk.
Experts determined there was consistent evidence these conditions increase a person's risk, regardless of age:
- Chronic kidney disease
- COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Obesity (BMI of 30 or higher)
- Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant
- Serious heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies
- Sickle cell disease
- Type 2 diabetes
- The CDC believes symptoms may appear anywhere from two to 14 days after being exposed.
Human coronaviruses are usually spread...
- Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
- Through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes or talks. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
- Some recent studies have suggested that COVID-19 may be spread by people who are not showing symptoms.
Help stop the spread of coronavirus
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Eat and sleep separately from your family members
- Use different utensils and dishes
- Cover your cough or sneeze with your arm, not your hand.
- If you use a tissue, throw it in the trash.
Find a testing location
City officials recommend getting a COVID-19 test if you experience fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea.
Here's a Testing Sites Locator to help you find the testing location closest to you in San Antonio.
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