This past week’s COVID-19 statistics show that Grayson County may be heading in the right direction.
On July 28, the number of active cases stood at 59, down 32 cases from the previous Tuesday.
The number of cases in Van Alstyne dropped even more dramatically from eight at the end of last week to just one on Tuesday. Howe reported three active cases, only one more than the previous week.
In an interview Tuesday night with television station KXII, Grayson County Judge Bill Magers reported that hospital bed availability is also going up.
According to Magers, 84 percent of the county’s ICU beds were occupied, but out of those, only 27 percent were COVID-19 related.
"Some of the folks in the hospital are going to be Grayson County residents, some are not, so you can’t really look at the number of people COVID-related or not in the hospital as Grayson County numbers," he said.
Statewide, the number of daily cases also appeared to be falling slightly, with the number dropping below 9,000 cases for the first time in nearly three weeks.
While the trends may be going in the right direction, Texas still ranked third nationally in the total number of new cases, trailing only California and Florida over the past seven days with 53,489 cases.
In response to the situation, Gov. Greg Abbott announced Tuesday that the Texas Health and Human Services Commission had extended its application deadline for the federal Pandemic-Electronic Benefit Transfer program (P-EBT) until Aug. 21.
This is a one-time benefit of $285 per child can be used to pay for groceries. Families that lost access to meals through the National School Lunch Program due to school closures are eligible for this benefit.
According to the most recent Texas Department of Education statistics, nearly 20 percent of Van Alstyne High School students were eligible for either free or reduced lunch.