TEXAS — Texas has exceeded 70,000 deaths attributed to COVID-19, according to data released by Johns Hopkins University.
As of Wednesday the university has the death toll in Texas at 71,380. However, state data puts the death toll at 68,792 as of Oct. 29. That number is only updated on Fridays.
Johns Hopkins currently has the COVID death toll in Florida at 59,670 and California at 72,188.
Despite the harrowing milestone the situation in Texas has improved a great deal in recent weeks. As of Tuesday the Department of State Health Services reports that just 3,333 Texans are hospitalized with the virus. Of those, 2,051 are in general hospital beds and 1,196 are in intensive care.
There are currently 86 hospitalized pediatric COVID-19 patients in the state.
DSHS on Tuesday reported 2,984 new confirmed cases of the disease, 1,237 new probable cases and 129 new fatalities attributed to the virus.
These numbers come as DSHS says it has directed the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to ship Pfizer’s pediatric COVID-19 vaccine to more than 900 providers in 155 Texas counties in the next week.
A total 349,200 pediatric doses will be delivered to Texas pharmacies in order to vaccinate children between the ages of 5 and 11.
“Vaccinating children between the ages of 5 and 11 helps to protect all Texans from COVID-19,” said Dr. John Hellerstedt, DSHS commissioner. “Twenty-two Texas children between the ages of 5 and 11 have died from complications of COVID-19 and 118 have been diagnosed with Multisystem Inflammatory Syndone in Children. The pediatric vaccine will further help reduce the spread of disease and prevent the rare but serious complications of COVID-19 in this age group.”
Texas is home to nearly 2.9 million children between the ages of 5 and 11.