Thursday, 24 Sep 2020

Texas sees record number of coronavirus hospitalizations after state reopens

Texas reported a record number of coronavirus-related hospitalizations Monday after becoming one of the first to states to start reopening from lockdown, according to a report.

The Lone Star State currently has 1,935 infected patients in hospitals, eclipsing the previous record of 1,888 on May 5, CNBC reported.

The upward trend comes after Gov. Greg Abbott began allowing retail stores, restaurants, malls and other public spots to open for business with social distancing May 1.

The number of new COVID-19 infections also shot up 71% across the state in the last two weeks, the Texas Tribune reported.

But officials have attributed the spike in new cases to hotspots such as meatpacking plants and state prisons, which have recently begun mass testing, the newspaper reported.

As prisons began reporting test results, the number of inmates across the state who tested positive climbed from 2,500 to 6,900 in two weeks, according to the report.

As a result, some experts say hospitalization figures — not the number of new infections — are a better way to track a state’s reopening performance, since testing data can fluctuate considerably depending on the number of tests being performed.

“Looking at things like how many ICU admissions and deaths are probably some of the strongest and most reliable (data points) because they are the worst outcomes that could happen,” Dr. David Hardy, an infectious disease professor at Johns Hopkins University, told CNBC.

More than 1,800 Texans have been killed by the virus, which has infected at least 76,000 people across the state, according to the latest data from Johns Hopkins University.

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