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COVID Tracker: Bexar County risk level remains high and worsening; case average hovers near 1,000 daily

More than 300 patients are in Bexar County hospitals with COVID-19 for the first time since February, but the death rate has slowed with the new variants.

SAN ANTONIO — COVID-19 hospitalizations remain above 300 in the San Antonio area, indicating that the virus is continuing to spread in the community.

On Tuesday, there were 326 patients receiving treatment for coronavirus symptoms in local hospitals, according to health authorities.  

Of those hospitalizations, 61 patients are in intensive care, and 15 of them are using ventilators. 

Virus-related deaths, however, remain low, with just two in Bexar County in the past week.

There were 663 new infections reported Tuesday. The seven-day case average stands at 998, dipping below 1,000 for the first time in a week. That figure has also been gradually increasing for the last three months, but it's also widely believed to be an undercount due to the availability of at-home COVID-19 tests that go unreported.

More than 590,000 COVID-19 diagnoses have been reported in Bexar County, while 5,344 residents have died of virus complications since the start of the pandemic. One new death was reported Tuesday.

Credit: KENS 5
Bexar County COVID-19 hospitalizations as of July 19, 2022
Credit: KENS 5
Bexar County COVID-19 reported cases as of July 19, 2022

Vaccine progress in Bexar County

The following numbers are provided by San Antonio Metro Health. A full breakdown can be found here.

  • 1,455,493 eligible Bexar County residents are fully vaccinated as of July 19, which is about 71.5% of the total population. It's 76.8% of the vaccine-eligible population, since the vaccine is not authorized for children under age 5.
  • 547,238 eligible Bexar County residents have received a COVID-19 booster shot as of July 19, which is 39.0% percent of the population. 

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 9,145 on Tuesday, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services. That total includes 6,435 new confirmed cases and 2,710 new probable cases. More details can be found on this page.

Tuesday's figures bring the total number of Texans diagnosed with COVID-19 to more than 7.31 million.

An additional 25 Texans have died from virus complications, the state reported Wednesday, raising the statewide death toll to 87,428.

Coronavirus symptoms

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.

A self-screening tool is available to see if you need a test.

Here's a Testing Sites Locator to help you find the testing location closest to you in San Antonio.

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