The number of confirmed coronavirus cases in Bexar County continued to rise Monday, though San Antonio officials reported no additional deaths.
As of 4 p.m. Monday, 57 people in the county have tested positive for the virus, according to the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District. That number was 45 on Sunday, the same day officials confirmed a woman in her 80s being treated at Brooke Army Medical Center was the first Bexar County resident to die of COVID-19.
The updated numbers came ahead of an announcement by City of San Antonio and Bexar County leaders of an order further restricting residents’ movements and non-essential business operations in an attempt to slow the contagion.
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Of the 57 coronavirus cases, 28 are related to travel outside of the area, with another seven tied to close contact with someone who traveled, according to Metro Health. Health officials attributed another 16 cases to person-to-person spread within Bexar County. Another six are under investigation.
Statewide, more than 10,000 people have been tested for coronavirus, with 352 testing positive, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS). However, it’s unclear exactly how up-to-date the State’s numbers are, as the department reported only 24 coronavirus cases in Bexar County as of Monday.
On Sunday, DSHS Commissioner John Hellerstedt urged Texans to continue following social distancing rules to slow the spread of the virus and avoid overwhelming the health care system: Stay home and avoid nonessential trips, wash hands and sterilize surfaces frequently, and stay at least 6 feet away from other people.
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“The peak depends completely on the ability to affect the spread” of the virus, Hellerstedt said at a televised press briefing Sunday. “It is a very fast, very steep rise, and that is the thing we want to prevent. We want to slow it down so the peak comes later and lower.”
Since the outbreak began, Metro Health had tested 400 people for coronavirus as of 4 p.m. Monday, with 42 positive tests. Other positive test results came from private labs, which are not required to report to Metro Health the total number of tests they’ve administered. Private labs are required only to report positive test results.
The way the numbers are reported makes it difficult to determine how many total people in Bexar County have been tested for coronavirus.
Metro Health runs diagnostic tests for coronavirus for all public health departments in Region 8, which includes 28 counties throughout South Texas, including all of the counties bordering Bexar County. The agency does not currently report the total number of tests conducted on a county-by-county basis.
Metro Health has released a breakdown of positive cases by age range. The largest number of cases falls into the 40-49 age bracket. Fifteen people, or 26 percent, of the total cases, fell into that group.
People in their 20s make up the second-largest group of confirmed cases in Bexar County. Twelve people, or 21 percent, of positive cases are people ages 20-29, according to Metro Health.