Fifteen people died due to the coronavirus this week in Hidalgo County and health officials reported another 66 tested positive Friday.
Two men in their 70s and an Edinburg man in his 60s were among the most recent deaths reported Friday. All were unvaccinated, according to officials.
Of the 15 deaths reported this week, 13 people were unvaccinated.
The county reported five COVID-related deaths at the start of the week, followed by four deaths Tuesday, then three deaths Wednesday. On Thursday, Hidalgo County did not release its COVID update due to the Veterans Day holiday.
Of the 66 cases reported by the Hidalgo County Health and Human Services Department on Friday, five were confirmed, 57 probable and four were suspected.
Children 11 or younger led the majority of cases reported Friday with 25 cases. People younger than 19, but older than 12 and adults in their 40s were the next age groups, each with nine cases.
In total, Hidalgo County officials reported a total of 285 people tested positive for COVID-19 this week: 65 were confirmed, 211 probable and 9 were suspected. Forty-five percent of this week’s cases were people 19 or younger.
Hidalgo County does not include in their COVID statistics whether people who test positive for the virus are vaccinated. The county continues to track cases in schools, with a total of 3,683 students and 718 school staff testing positive for COVID-19 as of Friday.
Additionally, county officials reported eight staff members from local schools tested positive for COVID-19 Friday along with 44 more students.
Hospitalizations continue to steadily fluctuate this week as health officials reported 50 people are in Hidalgo County hospitals. The majority are adults with the exception of three children. Moreover, 21 patients are in intensive care units; all adult patients.
In contrast, Hidalgo County reported 47 hospitalizations, with 24 patients in ICUs at the start of the week, followed by 53 hospitalizations on Tuesday, with 23 patients in ICUs. Then, officials reported 49 hospitalizations on Wednesday, with 20 patients in ICUs.
Hidalgo County also reported the Texas Division of Emergency Management has administered monoclonal antibody infusion treatments to 1,756 people at the Regional Infusion Center, which opened at DHR Health in Edinburg Aug. 27.
The county’s case tally is 118,456, of which 68,721 were confirmed, 46,832 probable and 2,903 suspected, with 550 cases reported active.
The county also reported 74 people were released from isolation Friday, raising that total to 114,425.
As of Friday, a total of 707,464 COVID-19 tests have been administered in Hidalgo County, with 588,191 returning negative results.
Hidalgo County uses the case status definitions provided by the Texas Department of State Health Services’ 2020 Epi Case Criteria Guide:
>> Confirmed cases are those who tested positive through a molecular or PCR (oral or nasal swabs) test that looks for the presence of the virus’s genetic material;
>> Probable cases are those who meet presumptive laboratory evidence through detection of COVID-19 by antigen test in a respiratory specimen;
>> Suspect cases are those who meet supported laboratory evidence through detection of specific antibodies in serum, plasma, whole body and no prior history of being confirmed or probable case.
In Cameron County, officials reported a total of five COVID-related deaths and 148 more cases of the virus this week.
The county’s Friday report covers both Thursday and Friday, according to officials.
Three COVID-related deaths were reported Friday, which included a Brownsville woman in her 40s, a Port Isabel woman in her 70s and a Brownsville woman in her 80s, all who were unvaccinated.
At the start of the week, Cameron County officials reported one death, followed by another death on Tuesday, then no deaths on Wednesday.
The COVID-19 death toll for the county nears the 2,000 mark as the total now stands at 1,990.
Of the 41 cases reported Friday, Cameron County officials noted 16 were from facilities housing unaccompanied minors and detention centers.
All of the cases were people younger than 19, but older than 10 with the exception of a child nine or younger and one young adult in their 20s.
The remaining 25 cases reported in Cameron County outside the facilities were led by adults in their 40s with six cases. People younger than 19, but older than 10 and young adults in their 20s were the next age group, each with four cases.
In total, Cameron County officials reported a total of 148 people tested positive for COVID-19 this week.
As of Friday, the total number of COVID-19 cases in Cameron County was 53,686.
Additionally, the county also reported 248 people recovered from the virus on Friday, increasing that total to 50,505.
As for Cameron County’s vaccination efforts, officials have increased their 12 and older population range to 5 and older. As of Friday, 73.22% of their 5 and older population are fully vaccinated, with 8562% receiving at least one dose.
The county also reported that 87.58% of their 65 and older population are fully vaccinated, with 95.99% receiving at least one dose.