Hays County reports 34.37% increase in COVID-19 deaths

County officials said they were never properly notified of the new deaths, which were found due to new reporting protocols from the Texas Department of State Health Services for hospitals, funeral homes and nursing facilities. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)
County officials said they were never properly notified of the new deaths, which were found due to new reporting protocols from the Texas Department of State Health Services for hospitals, funeral homes and nursing facilities. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

County officials said they were never properly notified of the new deaths, which were found due to new reporting protocols from the Texas Department of State Health Services for hospitals, funeral homes and nursing facilities. (Community Impact Newspaper staff)

Hays County announced 22 COVID-19 deaths Oct. 23 as a result of a new reporting system implemented by the Texas Department of State Health Services, bringing the county's total to 86.

According to the county, the Hays County Local Health Department was never properly notified of the new deaths, which were found due to new reporting protocols from the DSHS for hospitals, funeral homes and nursing facilities. Almost all of the new deaths were residents known to have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the release said.

The press release did not include when these residents died, and Hays County did not respond to a request for comment by press time.

One of the two deaths previously reported in Mountain City was removed from the county's total after an internal review. It was not immediately clear if it was moved to another Hays County city or removed entirely, which would mean that 23 new deaths were reported Oct. 23. Clarification is being sought from the county.

In either situation, the increase from 64 deaths reported a day earlier represents a 34.37% jump in total deaths.


Seven deaths were added for Kyle; San Marcos and Austin deaths each increased by five; Buda went up by three; Dripping Springs rose by two; Wimberley increased by one.

The DSHS had not updated its dashboard to reflect the new deaths as of press time and still displayed 74 Hays County deaths. However, the release said the county's data would be more in line with state data going forward.

“The change is another enhancement in the state’s reporting system,” health department Director Tammy Crumley said in the press release. “We’ve seen continual improvement over the course of the pandemic in terms of reporting and data coding.”

General data

The county reported 6,287 lab-confirmed cases of the virus Oct. 23, with 39,824 tests providing a total positivity rate of 15.79%. That rate has slowly crept down from 18.04% at the beginning of October. While a seven-day positivity rate was unavailable due to a gap in county reporting, that rate hovered between 6.68% and 6.02% this week.

Probable cases increased from 751 to 769 this week.

Active cases that require the county to confirm recoveries with individuals continued a steady decline and were down to 510 from 1299 at the beginning of the month and from 661 at the start of the week. The majority of these cases were in Kyle and Buda, with 322 and 99 cases, respectively.

Cases reported as active to the county over the past 21-day period were up by 51 since the start of the week—a 17.59% increase from 290 to 341. That figure was at 386 when the month began—a 11.66% decline.

Active hospitalizations remained in the single digits for most of October, and there were nine as of Oct. 23. The number of county residents to have been hospitalized for the virus increased from 344 to 366 between Oct. 1-23.

San Marcos CISD reported five active, on-site student coronavirus cases for the week ending Oct. 18, in addition to two new active cases among staff. Altogether, there have been nine student cases and five staff cases reported by the district.

Hays CISD reported three staff and three student cases for the same time period. There have been eight staff cases and nine student cases since classes began.


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.


MOST RECENT

Renderings of the conceptual tower were shown depicting a roughly 100-foot tower, but the intent is to build a smaller tower. A total of $2.43 million was given as an estimated cost for a 100-foot gravity tower, but presenters said the cost would scale down with a smaller tower. (Courtesy city of Frisco)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Early concept for Frisco’s Northwest Community Park includes biking tower for ‘gravity riding’; Perky Beans Cafe now open in Leander, and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 20.

Eanes ISD increases substitute pay. (Grace Dickens/Community Impact Newspaper)
Eanes ISD votes to increase substitute pay

Pay raise for Eanes ISD substitutes

Eanes ISD relaxes in-person visitation rules. (Courtesy Pexels)
Eanes ISD easing restrictions on campus activities

Eanes ISD easing restrictions in time for Veterans Day celebrations

The program is being developed with input from Main Street Advisory Board and the Historic Preservation Commission. (Photo Community Impact Newspaper Staff)
San Marcos City Council adopts legacy business program

The program is being developed with input from Main Street Advisory Board and the Historic Preservation Commission.

Want to know more about new businesses coming to the Katy area? Below you can find details on the five latest commercial projects filed in Katy. (Courtesy Canva)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Read the latest top news about restaurants, businesses and other commercial projects that are coming soon or now open

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 19.

Black Rock Coffee Bar's menu features Americanos, drip coffees, cold brews, specialty lattes, teas and smoothies. (Courtesy Black Rock Coffee Bar)
4 businesses coming to Cedar Park, Leander; Barton Springs Pool reopens and more Central Texas news

Read the latest business and community news from the Central Texas area.

Doug Wozniak, director of school safety and health services for SMCISD, presented COVID-19 updates Oct. 18. (Screen shot courtesy San Marcos CISD)
80% of San Marcos CISD staff fully vaccinated against COVID-19

Over 1,000 school district staff are now vaccinated.

The next Hays CISD meeting will be on Oct. 25 at 5:30 p.m. in the Historic Buda Elementary Campus, 300 N San Marcos St., Buda. (Zara Flores/Community Impact Newspaper).
Hays CISD board of trustees vote to change 2021-22 academic school year schedule

The Hays CISD board of trustees changed its 2021-22 academic school year to support teachers.

The new H-E-B store is located on Ronald Reagan Boulevard in north Leander. (Taylor Girtman/Community Impact Newspaper)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: New H-E-B in Leander opening soon; Texas Supreme Court grants rehearing for high-speed rail eminent domain case and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 18.

The Boo-da Halloween at Buda City Park will provide plenty of free entertainment and a spooky movie. (Courtesy City of Buda)
Coming October and November events in San Marcos, Buda and Kyle

Here are some spooky events happening throughout San Marcos, Buda and Kyle.

The multiple projects included in both propositions for the Buda Bond election include projects as high as $24 million and as low as $200,000. (Community Impact Newspaper)
Several large projects included in Buda’s Nov. 2 bond election

The multiple projects included in both propositions for the Buda Bond election include projects as high as $24 million and as low as $200,000.

The amended version of the planned development unit will now go to the Austin Planning Commission for review. (Rendering courtesy Austin Environmental Commission)
CI NATION ROUNDUP: Austin commission OKs development plan near Lady Bird Lake; shopping center coming to Porter and more top news

Take a look at the top five trending stories across all of Community Impact Newspaper’s coverage areas as of Oct. 15.