The combined total COVID-19 patient count—which is based on daily COVID-19-related patient admissions submitted to SETRAC by Harris County hospitals—was the lowest the county has seen since June 17, when 751 COVID-19 patients were in general wards and 334 patients were in ICUs.
COVID-19 hospitalizations began rapidly increasing in early June before reaching a peak of nearly 2,800 in mid-July, according to SETRAC data. Since then, they have been slowly falling. Prior to June, SETRAC's count of COVID-19 patients never exceeded 800, even during an initial peak in early April.
COVID-19 patients made up 23.9% of total ICU occupancy in the county as of Aug. 19. Public health officials have previously said they hope to see that number fall below 15%.
A total of 804 new COVID-19 cases were confirmed in Harris County on Aug. 19 along with 22 deaths caused by the virus. The total case count now stands at 94,676, with 28,123 active cases, 65,456 recovered cases and 1,095 deaths.
The spread of the virus has been slowing for nine consecutive days in Harris County, according to the Texas Medical Center. The testing positivity rate at TMC hospitals has been flat week over week and remains at around 8.6%.