The San Antonio Metropolitan Health District reported one death and 100 new cases of COVID-19 on Saturday.
Dr. Tamara Simpson and two nurses rush a patient to the Northeast Baptist Hospital COVID-19 Unit, on April 24, 2020. The number of patients with the virus in San Antonio hospitals has been dropping steadily in recent weeks but every few days there’s a slight increase as there was Saturday, when Metro Health reported 85 patients infected with the disease, three more than Friday.
The death was of a white man in his 60s with underlying medical conditions, city officials said.
That pushes the death toll in Bexar County to 1,074 and the count of positive test results to 54,295 since the novel coronavirus pandemic started in mid-March.
“COVID-19 may linger in our community for a long time,” Mayor Ron Nirenberg said Saturday. “Though the average daily cases and hospitalizations are nowhere near our summer surge, please consider the risks before you leave home.”
The hospital number ticked up slightly Saturday.
The statistics posted on Metro Health’s website, covid19.sanantonio.gov, listed 228 people in San Antonio hospitals with COVID-19, that’s up three from Friday’s 225, with 34 of those being new admissions.
Of those hospitalizations, 85 were in intensive care, up from 83 on Friday, and 30 were on ventilators to help them breathe, four fewer than Friday.
Only 15 percent of staffed hospital beds were available citywide the Saturday figures showed; that was 668 of 4,503. But 73 percent of the city’s 767 ventilators were available.
That still leaves the area’s health system at a high level of stress, according to the Southwest Texas Regional Advisory Council score, which takes into account the availability and use of personal protective equipment in hospitals and the availability and use of ventilators and staffed hospital beds.
Area residents continue to report violations of standing public health emergency orders, including the requirement to wear masks in public where social distancing of at least 6 feet from others can’t be assured, such as in grocery and convenience stores.
Friday, officers reported receiving a total of 57 calls; most were received by Code Enforcement, which had 34. Of those only one was a violation and in that case, a citation was issued for not using a mask. No violations were observed in any of the other calls — San Antonio Police received 17 and Parking Enforcement received six.
In all, since the emergency started, there have been 13,799 calls reporting violations. Violations were observed in 2,975 of those calls. Most people received warnings. But citations were issued for failure to wear masks in 73 cases and 165 citations were issued for other violations such as failure to observe the social distancing requirement or allowing large gatherings.
The city runs two free, walk-up testing sites, one at the Cuellar Community Center, 5626 San Fernando St., and the other at the Ramirez Community Center, 1011 Gillette Blvd.
Both testing sites are open every day from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. No appointment needed.
Residents also can get tested for the novel coronavirus at the Freeman Coliseum, 3201 E. Houston St., but an appointment is required. The site is open daily, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. To make an appointment, call 833-213-0643.
Laredo confirmed no new coronavirus-related deaths Saturday. So far, 290 have died from the disease.
The Gateway City also reported 13,686 positive cases of coronavirus, with 521 of those being active. In its hospital system, there are 90 coronavirus patients, with 44 in intensive care.
Liz Hardaway is a staff writer covering San Antonio government and politics. To read more from Liz, become a subscriber. email@example.com | Twitter: @liz_hardaway