As the death toll reaches 400, 33 residents have died today due to complications related to COVID-19, Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez said Wednesday. According to a press release from the county, another 650 have tested positive for the virus, bringing the total number of positive cases to 13,776.
“I am truly saddened by the passing of all 33 of our neighbors. My deepest sympathies and prayers go out to the friends and families who lost their loved ones,” Cortez said. “Our Shelter at Home order goes into effect tonight, I encourage you all to do your part in saving lives by abiding by the curfew, limiting your outings to only essential needs, avoiding any mass gatherings and continuing to use facial coverings while out in public.”
There are 7,675 net active cases and 228 people were released from isolation today, meaning that they have been symptom-free for 10 days, including three days without a fever. There are currently 1,080 people hospitalized with complications from the virus; 257of those cases are being treated in intensive care units.
In addition to the county update, the Hidalgo County Sheriff’s Office sent a release this evening, stating the Hidalgo County Detention Center have 38 positive cases of COVID-19.
According to their press release, the Hidalgo County Detention Center tested 41 inmates for COVID-19 on Mon. June 20 after the inmates demonstrated or reported symptoms consistent with the virus.
On Tuesday, July 21, the Sheriff’s Office received the results of the exams and confirmed 32 of the inmates tested positive for COVID-19, in addition to 6 cases previously confirmed.
The inmates have since been transferred to Non-Pressure Cell (NPC) where they are housed alone or housed in larger cells with other COVID-19 positive inmates. The inmates are constantly monitored by jail medical staff and provided medical care.
The Sheriff’s Office stated they assure the public the Hidalgo County Detention Center “is taking every precaution necessary to ensure the safety of every inmate housed in our facility and our staff.”
Efforts to mitigate the spread include the wearing of facial masks for inmates and employees, latex gloves, the daily sanitation of the entire facility utilizing disinfecting misting equipment and following all CDC, Hidalgo County Health Department guidelines and Texas Commission on Jail Standards.