COVID-19 ICU

A nurse does rounds to check on coronavirus patients in the intensive care unit at CHRISTUS Santa Rosa on Monday, July 13, 2020. MIKALA COMPTON | Herald-Zeitung

Comal County added 93 cases of COVID-19 and two more deaths to its data on Tuesday while the region's hospitalization rate continued to climb.

The two newest deaths were both New Braunfels men. One in his 70s died on Jan. 5 while another in his 50s died on Jan. 9.

The hospitalization rate for the 22-county region that includes Comal and Guadalupe counties hit 23.16% on Tuesday.

The region went under stricter state restrictions at the end of the year after the percentage of hospital beds taken by COVID-19 patients climbed above 15% for seven consecutive days.

Those restrictions, which included closing bars and limiting other businesses to 50% capacity will remain in place until the region goes another seven consecutive days under 15%.

Sixty-two of the hospitalizations are Comal County residents. Local hospitals, which have been caring for a mix of local and out-of-area patients, reported caring for 91 patients on Tuesday with 17 in intensive care and 11 on ventilators.

New cases

Of the 93 cases added on Tuesday, 74 of them are probable and 19 are confirmed. The county also added an additional 152 recoveries form the disease, leaving the county with 772 active cases. The county's death toll since the pandemic arrived last March now stands at 188.

Most of the new cases come from New Braunfels which added 77, five more were from north of Canyon Lake, eight were from south of the lake, one was from the Garden Ridge area and two were from Spring Branch/Bulverde.

Twelve of the cases are people under 20 with one an infant under a year old, 21 are in their 20s, 20 are in their 30s and 40s, 30 are in their 50s ad 60s and 10 are 70 or older.

The seven-day day positivity rate for the county was 22.47% for the more accurate molecular test and 9.34% for the quicker, less reliable antigen test.

Residents wishing to be tested for COVID-19 can call the county’s dedicated hotline, 830-221-1120, between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Monday through Friday to schedule an appointment. Testing is only done on Tuesday and Friday, and you must have an appointment.

The county's health office is currently out of COVID-19 vaccine, but are pointing residents to the website to track criteria and other locations that may have it available.

Most of the vaccinations in the county so far have been front line medical workers and first responders.

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