Galveston County, as of Sunday, has a total of 240 positive tests for COVID-19, including 18 new positive cases, according to the Galveston County Health District.
Of the cases announced Sunday, eight were linked to community spread, meaning those tested had not traveled or been linked to someone with a known COVID-19 diagnosis but had picked it up from an unknown source in the community.
Seven were linked to someone with a known positive COVID-19 diagnosis. One-third, or six of those testing positive, were in the 31-40-year-old age range, the health district said.
The number of known cases in the county has more than doubled in five days; the county knew of 119 positive cases on April 1. But later in the week, 83 employees and residents at The Resort at Texas City, a nursing home, tested positive, pushing the total number rapidly upward. Seventy of those cases were from a group of 146 employees and residents tested Wednesday and Thursday. The results of those tests were announced by the health district on Saturday.
Of the 240 people diagnosed with COVID-19 in the county, 56 have recovered and one has died. The first death was reported Saturday. It is not known where the first fatality, a woman, lived or whether she was hospitalized, only that she was in the age range of 81 to 90 years old.
For most people, the coronavirus causes only mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough.
For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia. The vast majority of people recover from the virus.
People with mild illness recover in about two weeks; those with more severe illness might take three to six weeks to recover, according to the World Health Organization.
The health district continues to urge all residents of Galveston County to practice safe social distancing, remaining at least 6 feet apart in public places, and to remain at home if possible until the spread of the virus tapers off. Residents are urged to wash hands often for at least 20 seconds and wipe down and sanitize surfaces like door knobs, faucet handles and counter tops.
Galveston County Local Health Authority Dr. Philip Keiser on Friday predicted the area will see a peak in the upward climb of infection rates by the first or second week in May.