A total of 2,730 new cases of COVID-19 and 30 deaths caused by the coronavirus were confirmed in Harris County over the July 25-26 weekend, according to data from the Harris County and Houston public health departments.
The death tally in the county has climbed to 644, with 109 of those deaths having been confirmed in the past week and and about one third of the total death count confirmed since July 10, according to county data.
The daily hospitalization rate in Texas Medical Center member hospitals has been trending downward over the past week, according to TMC data, as has the testing positivity rate in the nine-county Greater Houston area.
The seven-day average for daily hospitalizations was around 280 as of July 25, down from a recent high of around 350 on July 14. The seven-day average for the testing positivity rate—which surged from 16% on July 14 to 25% on July 18—has since fallen back down to 17% on July 24.
At a July 24 press conference announcing the ordered closure of all public and nonreligious private schools in Harris County until Sept. 8, county Judge Lina Hidalgo said, while the curve appears to be flattening by some metrics, the overall trends for hospitalizations and new cases are still higher than acceptable.
The number of COVID-19 patients across all Harris County intensive care units held steady over the weekend, falling slightly from 687 on July 24 to 661 on July 26, according to the Southeast Texas Regional Advisory Council. Base ICU capacity remains completely full in TMC hospitals, with about 23% of surge capacity beds occupied as of July 25. More than half of patients in ICUs are COVID-19 positive, according to TMC officials.