Public health officials in Dallas County are urging vigilance as COVID-19 cases rise and communities prepare for the Thanksgiving holiday. 

Dallas County reported 947 new positive cases on Wednesday, but County Judge Clay Jenkins urged caution explaining that the number of cases may be higher due to errors in the state’s electronic lab reporting system. 786 of these cases were lab confirmed while 161 were probable.

“Today, for the second day in a row, Dallas County reports under 1,000 new COVID cases but I caution because these numbers appear to still be low due to lower than expected numbers from the state’s electronic laboratory reporting system,” Jenkins said in a press release.

These numbers bring the total number of cases in the Lake Highlands zip codes of 75243, 75231, and 75238 to 1,968, 1,960 and 983, respectively.

As of 9:36 a.m. on November 19th, schools within the Lake Highlands’ feeder pattern report 32 active cases including students and faculty. There are 100 active cases in all of Richardson ISD. 

“COVID won’t be with us forever. The vaccines are very promising and will be here soon, but wishing that it would go away and pretending that things are better than they are will not work,” Jenkins said on Tuesday, urging constituents to rethink their daily habits to stop the spread of the disease.

Hospital capacity in the city of Dallas was 78% as of November 18th, while ICU capacity was at 80%, according to data from the city and 25 area hospitals.

In anticipation of gatherings and travel during the holiday season, Dallas County released safety recommendations to minimize risk this holiday season. Those guidelines may be viewed here

To view the most up-to-date information, you may visit the Dallas County Health and Human Services website.

Story by Scott Poole