COVID-19’s presence in Gregg County continued to fall Monday as public health officials released reports that show few new cases and a lower seven-day rolling rate of infection.

The Northeast Texas Public Health District reported just 27 total — 15 confirmed and 12 probable — cases since its previous report on Thursday and a drop in overall active cases of COVID-19 in the county. On Thursday, NET Health reported 76 cases from the previous three days.

Total active cases in the county went from 1,153 on Thursday to 1,106 on Monday.

Gregg County’s seven-day rolling rate of infection was 11.87 on Monday, a 34% decrease from Thursday’s report at which time it was 18.09.

The number means Gregg County’s retains a “moderate” level of community spread, but is not far outside a “minimal” level.

According to NET Health, moderate community spread is more than 10 but fewer than 35 new cases per 100,000 and represents “sustained transmission.” Moderate spread is 10 or fewer new cases with “evidence of isolated cases of limited community transmission.”

NET Health provides disease surveillance for Smith, Anderson, Henderson, Rains, Van Zandt and Wood counties in addition to Gregg. In its latest report, NET Health shows all seven counties with either moderate or minimal community spread.

The current levels show a marked decrease for all seven counties. About a month ago, the week ending Sept. 23, each of the counties had levels of community spread that were substantial — or 35 or more new cases per week adjusted for population.

According to NET Health, there were 153 East Texans being treated for COVID-19 at Tyler hospitals on Monday. The last time Smith County saw a similarly low local hospitalization rate was in August. Monday’s data is 60% lower than the high hospitalization rate of 389, which was reached just more a month ago.

On Sunday, the latest day for which data was available, there were 310 COVID-19 patients hospitalized in the state’s 19-county Trauma Region G, about 70 fewer than there were the previous Sunday. Of COVID patients hospitalized, 132 of those were in ICUs and 119 patients were on ventilators. In September, hospitalizations reached 822, the highest number of single-day COVID-19 hospitalizations in the region since the pandemic began.

In Gregg County on Monday, 50.28% of people age 12 and older had been fully vaccinated, according to the state, and 78.52% of residents age 65 and older had been fully vaccinated.

Statewide, 63.25% of Texans age 12 and up had been vaccinated on Monday and 80.03% of residents in the state age 65 and older were fully vaccinated.

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