East Texas COVID-19 hospitalizations remain above 15% for 16th day

East Texas COVID-19 hospitalizations remain above 15% for 16th day
Trauma Service Area A (Piney Woods RAC) (Source: Courtesy photo)

TYLER, Texas (KLTV) - COVID-19 hospitalizations have remained above 15 percent total capacity for the hospitals in the trauma service area that includes Smith and Gregg counties for 16 days straight.

TSA Area G hit the seven-day mark on Dec. 21, and as a result, some businesses have been required to scale back to opening at 50-percent of their capacity. Other businesses may be required to close.

On Wednesday, the COVID-19 hospitalization rate for Trauma Service Area G rose to 18.99 percent, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services. It was at 18.87 percent on Tuesday.

The last time that TSA G was below 15 percent was on Dec. 14, when the area’s hospitalization rate was at 14.26 percent.

Counties included in Trauma Service Area G include Anderson, Camp, Cherokee, Franklin, Freestone, Gregg, Harrison, Henderson, Houston, Marion, Panola, Rains, Rusk, Shelby, Smith, Trinity, Upshur, Van Zandt, and Wood.

Gov. Greg Abbott announced on Sept. 17 that counties could reopen businesses to 75 percent capacity and allow the resumption of elective surgeries. Bars were also allowed to reopen at 50 percent capacity. However, counties in Trauma Service Areas with over 15 percent COVID-19 hospitalizations for seven consecutive days would be excluded from that reopening.

In order to go back to 75 percent capacity, the rate needs to be below 15 percent for seven-straight days.

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