Local hospital capacity remains in “good shape” after a week of record-shattering new COVID-19 infections, Brazoria County Judge Matt Sebesta said Saturday.

“We will continue to monitor the hospitals and the numbers,” Sebesta said. “I have spoken with representatives from UTMB and CHI St. Luke’s and they are not overwhelmed.”

The judge also praised the mayors who issued mask orders for public safety.

“Any city that is a hot spot should do it,” Sebesta said. “I applaud them for putting in a mask order.”

Mask orders have come into effect after Texas and Brazoria County had their worst COVID-19 case counts of the pandemic, which started in March. So far, Lake Jackson, Pearland, Clute and Manvel have issued requiring people to wear masks in certain businesses, with some exceptions. Angleton instituted a measure late Friday encouraging people to wear masks.

While “there’s a chance” a countywide order could be implemented, it's not imminent, Sebesta said.

“Some areas have had few active cases which is why I’m leaving it up to the cities,” he said. “For now, it’s day by day.”

Smaller communities such as Danbury, Oyster Creek, Surfside, Jones Creek and Rosharon have fewer than 10 residents who are still showing symptoms, according to county data.

The county reported that 57 new positive tests for the novel coronavirus Saturday while 37 recovered.

Pearland reported its lowest total since Monday with 14 announced as positive. Four women in their 40s, three men in their 50s, two women in their 30s, two men in their 40s, a man in his 20s, and a teenage boy and girl were reported.

Nine residents from Lake Jackson also tested positive. Two women in their 20s, two women in their 60s, two men in their 30s, a man in his 40s, a teenage boy and a girl younger than 10 were added.

The City of Enchantment has experienced 38 of its 77 infections within the last week.

Clute residents included two men in their 30s, two women in their 20s, men in their 20s and 60s, a woman in her 30s and a girl younger than 10.

Richwood now has 22 residents who have tested positive after two men in their 40s, a man in his 20s and a woman in her 50s were infected. Before this week, Richwood had reported seven cases of COVID-19.

Manvel reported two women in their 20s, two women in their 60s, women in their 30s and 50s and men in their 30s and 60s.

Angleton also added a woman in her 20s, a man in his 60s, a teenage girl and a boy younger than 10 — the city’s lowest daily total since June 21.

Iowa Colony and Alvin added three residents each. Alvin residents included a man in his 20s, a woman in her 50s and a girl younger than 10 while Iowa Colony had a man and a woman in their 40s test positive along with a teenage boy.

Other residents included a West Columbia woman in her 50s, a Freeport man in his 30s and a Sweeny woman in her 20s.

The Alvin man in his 20s and the Pearland teenage girl and the woman and man in her 40s were reported as probable positive.

Probable cases are people who are exhibiting COVID symptoms and are linked to others who tested positive for the novel coronavirus, usually by living in the same household.

Brazoria County has seen 1,617 COVID-19 cases, with 690 confirmed cases and 876 recoveries. There are 35 cases considered probable, and 16 people have died.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death. The vast majority of people recover.

Nick Irene is a reporter for The Facts. Contact him at 979-237-0149.​

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