The spike in new COVID cases is actually higher than reported.


By SARA VANDEN BERGE

Erath County officials reported a considerable number of new COVID-19 cases on Wednesday.

The report shows that there are 24 new cases with 16 of those in Stephenville and eight in the county, bringing the total to 530 with 80 still considered active.

But Stephenville’s health authority Dr. Kelly Doggett said that number is actually higher.

“There were actually 19 more positives than that,” Dr. Doggett told Beneath the Surface News. “Those patients were tested in Stephenville, but gave out of county addresses, which I suspect were their permanent addresses as almost all of them were in the 18 to 22 age range.”

With Tarleton State University back in session, there have been reports of several large parties involving hundreds of students. Because of that, Doggett expects to see a big increase in new cases over the next couple of weeks.

Tarleton President Dr. James Hurley issued a statement Tuesday urging students to behave responsibly.

On Twitter he said, “I am saddened to learn of some careless and selfish behavior this past weekend. Several off-campus gatherings took place with a number of our students present. Health & safety guidelines were not practiced.”

Doggett said with local schools resuming in-person classes, officials expected to see an increase.

“We just hope those numbers continue to be manageable. That’s what mitigation and containment are all about,” he said. “Time will tell if we are successful.”

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Beneath the Surface News. sara@beneaththesurfacenews.com