Comal and Guadalupe counties report record week for COVID-19, surge in hospitalizations

Hospitalizations in Comal County increased to 24 and Guadalupe County announced 26 previously unreported hospitalizations. (Community Impact staff)
Hospitalizations in Comal County increased to 24 and Guadalupe County announced 26 previously unreported hospitalizations. (Community Impact staff)

Hospitalizations in Comal County increased to 24 and Guadalupe County announced 26 previously unreported hospitalizations. (Community Impact staff)



On June 27, Guadalupe County issued a press release in a Facebook post and announced 26 previously unreported hospitalizations of county residents due to COVID-19 in the largest increase to date. Previously, 10 had been reported since the pandemic began, and two were active as of June 26.

The press release, issued by the county's office of emergency management, stated the total number of county residents hospitalized because of the virus is unknown.

The office became aware of the unreported hospitalizations when a hospital contacted the county.

The office's most recent instance of apparent under-reporting of COVID-19 cases was not an isolated incident.


Of the 271 cases reported in Guadalupe County by the Texas Department of State Health Services, or DSHS, between June 23 and June 25, 240 were confirmed cases.

Despite that, a press release issued by the Guadalupe County Office of Emergency Management stated the county had 60 active cases as of June 25, while also reporting 86 new pending cases in the same release.

As of June 27, Guadalupe County had reported one resident death compared to Comal County's seven, despite having more cases for most of the pandemic's duration.

COVID-19 case totals in Comal County increased by 72.83%, from 346 cases to 598 between June 22 and June 27, according to data from the county's office of public health.

Guadalupe County's case total increased by 96.9%, from 323 cases to 636 in the same time period, according to the DSHS.

Between both counties, 565 new cases were reported during that timeframe.

There were 342 active cases of COVID-19 in Comal County on June 27, and hospitalizations increased from 17 to 24, an all-time high.

The cluster of COVID-19 cases at River Gardens in New Braunfels, a care facility for residents with intellectual or developmental disabilities, increased from three cases to 42 from June 25-27. Residents accounted for 32 of the cases, and there were 10 among staff members.

According to the office of public health, not all of the cases were added to the county's case count because some were pending confirmation.

The seven-day positivity rate for testing in Comal County was 19.7%, and the positivity rate for all testing in the county to date was 9.7% with 6,150 tests conducted.

Guadalupe County has not reported testing totals or positivity rates.

Every county along the I-35 corridor between Austin and San Antonio, with the exception of Comal and Guadalupe counties, issued executive orders on either June 17 or June 18, which required the usage of face coverings when visiting or working at most businesses.

As of June 28, Comal and Guadalupe counties had not issued such an order. Guadalupe County issued an advisory notice June 26 but did not make face coverings a requirement.

New Braunfels Mayor Rusty Brockman issued an order for face coverings June 23, a day after a council member was asked to self-isolate due to a possible COVID-19 exposure.

River parks in the city were closed the same day Gov. Greg Abbott ordered all rafting and tubing businesses to close June 26.

Of the 21,120 COVID-19 case investigations completed by DSHS, 18.4% were Texans in their 30s, 18.2% were in their 40s, 17.4% were in their 50s and 17% were in their 20s.

DSHS reported 143,371 cases in the state as of June 27, and there were 2,366 deaths caused by the coronavirus.
By Warren Brown
Warren joined Community Impact at the beginning of 2020 as the editor of its New Braunfels paper and now reports the news in San Marcos, Buda and Kyle. Warren previously wrote for the Dallas Observer and Fort Worth Weekly and he brings a passion for truth and equality to his reporting.


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