DALLAS - Dallas County once again set another record of single-day cases of COVID-19 on Monday as the outbreak shows no signs of slowing.
Health officials reported 1,214 new coronavirus cases and six deaths. The previous one-day record was 1,103, which occurred on Saturday. Monday was the fourth day in a row more than 1,000 new cases were reported in the county.
Officials also said there was a large jump in hospitalizations over the weekend, with 105 more hospitalized in the county due to COVID-19 on Sunday. That's the most in a single day, yet.
“In order for the numbers to increase dramatically with hospitalizations, the amount of the iceberg underneath the water must grow exponentially. This is what is happening in the community where we are seeing rampant spread,” said Judge Clay Jenkins.
On June 15, North Texas hospitals regionally had around 700 COVID-19 patients, now it's over 1600 hospitalized -- more than double in three weeks, according to the DFW Hospital Council.
“We have fearful that we're going to have a continued increase to the point by July 20, July 25, we may have to start implementing some surge plans,” said Stephen Love, Dallas-Ft. Worth Hospital Council.
Love said North Texas hospitals can accommodate up to 3,000 more patients if they go to their surge plans – which could include converting other hospital areas into bed space or putting two patients to a room.
“Currently we have adequate space, but I don't want people to take the message. Oh, they've got plenty of space, let's go out and be a little careless. No, we are looking at where we think we're going to be in two weeks,” he said.
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Love says there are also other concerns, like having enough personal protective equipment and healthy staff to care for those patients.
“We've been increasing every day, you know we increased this weekend. This morning, we've got more COVID-19 patients than we had on Friday. So with that increase coupled with what come in two weeks because of July 4th we could have some real increase in volume,” Love said.
Gov. Greg Abbott is also worried that the worst is not over.
“My concern is that we might see greater fatalities as we go forward,” Abbott told FOX4 on Monday evening.
Cases continue to rise across the state and deaths have been a lagging statistic in other parts of the country.
“The four days leading up to the 4th of July, combined, were the four deadliest days of this pandemic,” Abbott said, adding those people likely contracted COVID-19 in late May.
The six deaths reported Monday were: a DeSoto man in his 40s, a Dallas woman in her 50s, a Grand Prairie man in his 60s, a Dallas man in her 70s, a Dallas woman in her 80s, a Dallas woman in her 100s.
Meanwhile, contact tracers are finding their jobs nearly impossible, according to Jenkins, who says the average person who tests positive could be in recent contact with as many as a dozen people.
While the county uses an online system to alert those potential contacts, the 100 contact tracers in the county do not have enough time in the day to make more than 10,000 calls, as cases rise.
“If they work a 15 hour day, they can make about 200-300 phone calls,” Jenkins said.
There have been 27,054 cases in the county and 401 deaths since the pandemic started.