Some good news on the Covid-19 front

So where are we now? Well, the good news is that the rate of new infections in Round Rock has dropped from 45 new cases per day in the first week in July to 23 new cases per day. It is good that the rate of new infections is dropping but at the rate they are dropping it means we could be wearing masks for a while longer. The other good news is that as the infection rate drops the number of new fatalities also decreases and fewer people are in hospitals struggling to survive.

Round Rock has the most total confirmed cases in the County but we are the largest city in Williamson County so it would make sense that we would have a higher number than other cities.

Another reason our numbers are high is outbreaks or “Clusters” in our Senior Care facilities in Round Rock. Records show that the Trinity Care Center in mid-May had a total of 13 staff members and 68 residents test positive with 13 resident Covid-19 fatalities.  In mid-July, the San Gabriel Rehabilitation and Care Center reported 41 staff and 60 residents tested positive for the virus with 16 Covid-19 related fatalities.


The chart above shows the date of major changes in the state’s reopening plan and the effect on the spread of the virus. The blue portion of the chart is the average number of confirmed cases from July 1st thru August 4th. CUN is using the 7-day average number so you can see the real trends. This takes out the large swings in the day to day numbers caused by the testing laboratories reporting several days of testing all in one day, the reporting organizations not reporting every day, and the number of test sites open on any one day. It gives a better understanding of the rate of new infections with the testing and reporting fluctuations removed. You can also see how Williamson County compares to Travis County in the newly reported case of Covid-19 and how the rise and fall of the rates are not in sync.  

This chart shows the Average Rate of New Infections per 100k population in Travis, Bell and Williamson County which accounts for the differences in the population of each the county and shows Williamson County’s rates are dropping faster than the other two counties meaning we are doing the right things to lower or flatten the rate of new infections.

As far as which age group is seeing the most positive tests, the 18 to 30-year-old group still shows the highest cumulative number of cases. You can argue why that is such a higher level of people in that age group working, coming in contact with more people or traveling. The bottom line is that age group is a greater danger to susceptible people and need to keep their distance from the elderly, people with compromised immune systems and caregivers to those who are most likely to have a fatal outcome if infected.

Conclusion

I hate wearing a mask as much as the next person but it appears that the increased use of masks is making a difference in the rate of the spread and until a vaccine is available we could be stuck with them. As far as kicking back in your favorite local bar to enjoy a Friday-after-work Margareta, that may happen sooner if we can lower the spread and use some good old fashions Texas ingenuity to provide safe isolation.

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