Dallas County reports 1,000-plus new COVID-19 cases for eighth straight day

Dallas County reported more than 1,000 new cases of COVID-19 for the eighth straight day on Friday.

Health officials said there were 1,164 new cases on Friday, along with nine new deaths.

The county says the majority of new cases are still being driven by young adults and emergency room visits are up.

This week is on track to be Dallas County’s deadliest week. UT Southwestern projects that trend to continue over the next week.

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The governor reiterated Thursday that the best tool Texans have to slow the spread and prevent further shut down is masks.

“The only strategy we have left to avoid the economy shutting down again is for everyone to use a mask to slow the spread,” Abbott said.

The county says most cases are from people going to work and other large social gatherings, like house parties or going out in large groups.

Dallas County’s health director warned that local hospitals could reach "surge levels" by the end of the month if this current trend continues.

With face coverings on, Dallas County commissioners worked through technical difficulties Friday to get through a lengthy agenda, much of which was related to COVID-19.

Dallas County Health and Human Services Director Dr. Phillip Huang said many of the deaths continue to come from nursing homes.

He warned hospitals could soon reach their tipping point if numbers stay the same or get worse.

“Even if the current trends continue at the same rate as before July 4th weekend, then we may be reaching surge levels in the hospitals by mid to late July,” Dr. Huang said.

Parkland officials said since federal COVID-19 testing began in Dallas, healthcare workers have administered more than 77, tests.

Turnaround time for test results is also an issue.

Both Judge Clay Jenkins and Commissioner John Wiley Price said they've received complaints from several residents who got tested at Ellis Davis Field House more than a week ago.

“I mean 8-10 days, the latest email I just got. That's just unacceptable,” Price said.

Jenkins said part of the problem is the tests are being sent to private lab companies for processing.

He said the state and federal government isn't helping.

“We've been asking them since May to give us re-agents so we could do two-day turnaround testing at UT Southwestern and Parkland,” Jenkins said.

Meanwhile, the county received a donation consisting of 7,000 masks, which will be given to vulnerable residents.

“All the masks will go to different locations in Dallas County, to some of our senior centers,” Dallas County Commissioner Elba Garcia said.

Commissioners are also expected to vote on $30 million for the Dallas County Emergency Business Assistance Program, which will extend the number of businesses eligible to receive forgivable loans, as well as increase maximum loan amounts.

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