SAN ANTONIO (KTSA News) – San Antonio Metro Health reports the number of COVID-19 cases jumped by 151 Sunday, bringing the total since the pandemic started to 4,393. The number of coronavirus patients in hospitals also rose to 167, but there were no new deaths reported. The death tolls remains at 88.
Local health officials are closely monitoring the hospital numbers to make sure there’s enough room to treat people with other illnesses or emergencies. On Sunday, 78 percent of ventilators were available and 24 percent of staffed hospital beds were open. Nearly 23-hundred COVID-19 patients have recovered.
Saturday’s one-day increase of 230 coronavirus cases was the largest since mid March, and four more deaths were reported prompting Mayor Ron Nirenberg to remind area residents to take precautions. Those who passed away were Hispanic males with multiple underlying medical conditions. One individual was in his 50s and the other three were in their seventies.
“We must continue to work together to contain the spread of COVID-19,” said Nirenberg. “We likely will be battling this pandemic for a long time, and our best defense is vigilance.”
He said if you must leave your home, practice social distancing, wear a face covering, and wash your hands.
“If you are in an at-risk population, you should stay home whenever possible,” said Nirenberg.
Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff placed some of the blame for the surge on Governor Greg Abbott because he took away the power of cities and counties to make the wearing of face coverings mandatory when social distancing is not possible. He wrote a letter to the governor asking him to issue an executive order that would give cities and counties the option to make wearing face masks mandatory, but the governor replied that it’s a matter of individual responsibility and forcing people to wear masks would “deprive someone of their liberty.”
Metro Health tracks the area’s daily positivity rate, which is calculated by the number of positive tests conducted in a day divided by the number of lab tests conducted in a day. The rate has doubled from 5.8% on June 7 to approximately 10 – 11% today.
“Metro Health continues to monitor the COVID-19 progress and warning indicators to understand the impact of the virus in our community,” said Metro Health Director Dr. Dawn Emerick. “While the hospital system currently remains in stable condition, we must work together to practice safe behaviors to contain the spread.”
Testing is available for all individuals, including those who are not showing symptoms. Anyone who has symptoms consistent with COVID-19 –fever, muscle aches, cough, and shortness of breath– should self-quarantine regardless of whether or not they have been tested. A list of test locations and information is available at covid19.sanantonio.gov<https://covid19.sanantonio.gov/What-YOU-Can-Do/Testing>.