Dallas County Reports 1,619 New Cases, DeSoto Mayor Urges Residents To Use Caution

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COVID-19 Cases Double, Reports Remain Incomplete Due To Holidays

On December 28, 2021 Dallas County Health and Human Services reported 1,619 additional positive cases of COVID-19 in Dallas County, 1,377 confirmed cases and 242 probable cases. This report includes data received on Thursday, December 23rd. It does not include data from Friday the 24th through Tuesday the 28th (that will be shared later today).

“The numbers for today are doubling the numbers from our last reported day before Christmas of 874 cases on December 23, which was an 82% increase of the day before. COVID is now spreading rapidly again and for this reason, the Public Health Committee recommends a return to the “Red” risk level.

 

It is important that we all do all that we can to protect against the spread of the Omicron variant. We now know that two of our three monoclonal antibody treatments are ineffective against the Omicron variant. Prevention through vaccination and modifying behaviors remain our most effective tools against severe disease and hospitalization. Although we still have people in the hospital sick due to the Delta variant, the percentage of cases that are Omicron is increasing steadily.

The lack of an available effective antibody treatment against the Omicron variant for hospitalized patients is another reason to get boosted as soon as possible. Although tests are hard to come by presently, and so is the remaining effective monoclonal antibody, shots for boosters or first or second doses are readily available near you. Go to www.vaccines.org to make your appointment.

 

If you get your booster today, you’ll have full protection from it in two weeks and some protection from it soon after taking it. We are currently in the beginning of the Omicron wave, and it is not too late for you to get boosted, or get vaccinated. If you’re unvaccinated or vaccinated and eligible for your booster, you will have different requirements for quarantining after an exposure.

 

It’s very important that you wear your mask. Cloth masks, like the ones frequently seen with a message or words on them, or the name of a designer, have proven to be much less effective against COVID. Most cloth masks come with a slit for you to put a filter in, but people rarely use the filter or buy replacements. It’s important that we mask during this time of high spread. A surgical mask, like the kind worn by a doctor in a doctor’s office, or better still an N95 mask, is your best defense against spreading COVID. Make sure your mask is well fitted and sealed at all points around your face.

 

Since testing capacity is currently strained and some individuals may be asymptomatic and not seek testing, individuals with COVID may be unaware they are even sick and capable of spreading the virus. It’s important that we all wear our mask when in indoor settings outside our own home or in outdoor settings where six-foot distancing on all sides cannot be accomplished. Now is the time to make good, smart decisions about how you wish to run your office, do your shopping, or celebrate the new year.

 

To the extent possible, remote work would be wise. Employers like to have employees in the office, but with Omicron capable of spreading to fully vaccinated people, it may be the lesser of two evils to work from home, rather than having Omicron shutdown the workplace for an extended period of time. Likewise for shopping, using curbside pickup and delivery is important now.

And with our celebrations for New Years, celebrating with our household, rather than with large groups of people even in outdoor settings, is the recommended course. This new surge of Omicron comes at a bad time for all of us, but I’ve seen North Texas rise to the challenge and I’m confident we will do it again. I and my team will be working hard for you, and are humbled with your faith in us. Have a very happy and safe New Year,” said Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins.

19 additional deaths being reported  include the following:

  • A woman in her 30’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. She had been critically ill in an area hospital and did not have underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 30’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. He had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 40’s who was a resident of the City of Rowlett. He had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 40’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. He had been critically ill in an area hospital and did not have underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 40’s who was a resident of the City of Mesquite. He had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A woman in her 40’s who was a resident of the City of Balch Springs. She had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 50’s was a resident of the City of Garland. He was found deceased at home and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 50’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. He had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A woman in her 50’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. She had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 50’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. He had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A woman in her 60’s who was a resident of the City of Garland. She had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A woman in her 60’s who was a resident of the City of Garland. She had been hospitalized and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A woman in her 70’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. She had been hospitalized and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 80’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. He had been hospitalized and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 80’s who was a resident of the City of Sachse. He expired in hospice and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 80’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. He had been hospitalized and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A woman in her 80’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. She had been hospitalized and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A woman in her 90’s who was a resident of the City of Dallas. She had been critically ill in an area hospital and had underlying high risk health conditions.
  • A man in his 90’s who was a resident of the City of Mesquite. He had been hospitalized and had underlying high risk health conditions.

UTSW projects new cases could be as high as 1,000-2500 per day by mid-January.

UTSW forecast COVID slide

DeSoto Mayor’s Statement About Increase In COVID-19 Cases

Early Tuesday evening the Dallas County Public Health Committee elevated its color coded COVID-19 threat level to red, which reflects “High Community Risk for COVID-19 Transmission.” It had previously been ranked in the orange level reflecting a “Moderate Community Risk.”

 

We have also been following developments from across the country reflecting a resurgence of COVID-19 case numbers due to the rapid rise of the omicron variant.

One particularly distressing impact of this viral spread is the national surge in hospitalizations, especially among children being hospitalized for COVID-19.

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When hospital emergency rooms and critical care facilities become filled to capacity with COVID patients, patients with other life-threatening conditions such as heart attacks, auto accidents, and other serious and urgent health needs are put at risk with very limited access to treatment. Keeping our emergency rooms and critical care facilities up and running with available capacity is in the vital interests of everyone around us. Together we can limit the spread of COVID by continuing to follow medically proven protocols that we are all familiar with.

Remember that medical personnel that we rely on to treat COVID-19 and other patients have been putting themselves at risk since the start of the pandemic, including continued physical and mental exhaustion. They have done more than anyone could possibly ask.

We owe it to them, our loved ones, and our neighbors to take medically established precautions available to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Foremost on this list is getting vaccinated.

Millions of our countrymen have safely received COVID-19 vaccines since they received FDA authorization. These vaccines were developed using proven scientific methods and have saved countless people from serious and life-threatening illness. I hope that you and your age-appropriate children will choose to be vaccinated for your safety, your family’s safety, and the security of our hospital system.

According to data from the CDC, unvaccinated people are roughly six times more likely to test positive than vaccinated people, nine times more likely to be hospitalized, and 14 times more likely to die from COVID-related complications. We want every DeSoto resident to be safe.

Please try to avoid large crowds, and if you are going to be at a large gathering, please wear a mask, preferably an N-95 or high quality KN-95 mask which are readily available. Maintain a safe social distance from others, and frequently wash or sanitize your hands.

Please consider the need to bring large numbers of people together, including options such as rescheduling or employing virtual technology to allow for safe participation. And please consider your plans for New Year’s Eve and how to help prevent additional spread.

We will continue to monitor the situation nationally and locally, and share new COVID information with our residents as it becomes available.

In the mean time we encourage all of our residents to exercise due caution and to follow the medically proven precautions that are designed solely to keep us safe as we live through the Pandemic.