Coronavirus

Twenty-one new COVID-19 deaths were reported by the Bell County Public Health District on Wednesday and Tuesday as active cases rose slightly.

The district now shows deaths in the county due to the virus now totaling 674, despite a recent downward trend of local cases. County officials reported 16 new deaths on Tuesday, adding an additional five new deaths on Wednesday.

The health district did not provide any details of the deaths.

Active cases in the county rose by 58 to 818 on Tuesday, with the incidence rate rising to 225.39 cases per 100,000 people.

The county has now seen 33,136 total cases of the virus since the start of the pandemic, with 31,644 of those having recovered so far.

On Wednesday, regional hospitalizations of patients with COVID-19 went up, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.

Hospital beds taken up by COVID-19 patients in Trauma Service Area L — which includes Bell County — rose by 0.91 percentage points to 11.29 percent. The region had 1,133 staffed hospital beds, with 128 of those taken up by COVID-19 patients.

Trauma Service Area L includes hospitals in Bell, Coryell, Hamilton, Lampasas, Milam and Mills counties.

School cases

Temple Independent School District had five active confirmed COVID-19 cases on its seven-day dashboard Wednesday, along with two probable cases on its tracker.

The active cases included one at Travis Science Academy, two at Jefferson Elementary and two at Western Hills Elementary.

Belton ISD showed 46 active cases of COVID-19 on its dashboard Wednesday, with 17 of those confirmed and 29 probable. Active cases were located at 13 of the district’s 18 campuses, not including Lakewood Elementary, Leon Heights Elementary, Pirtle Elementary, Tarver Elementary and South Belton Middle School.

Salado ISD Superintendent Michael Novotny said the district had 10 active cases on Wednesday, with two students and an employee with the virus at Thomas Arnold Elementary and seven students at Salado Middle School.

Killeen ISD reported 90 active cases on its dashboard, with 66 students and 24 staff members with the virus.

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