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Tarrant County COVID-19 cases now number five; Denton has first case

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Tarrant County has a fifth case of COVID-19.

Tarrant County Public Health (TCPH) has identified a fifth positive case of COVID-19 in Tarrant County.

Tarrant County Public Health (TCPH) on March 16 said there was a fifth positive COVID-19 case in Tarrant County. The COVID-19 case, a resident of Tarrant County, contracted the virus on an out of state trip, developed symptoms after returning home and was later tested positive for the disease.

“This fifth case has been isolated at home after developing symptoms,” said Tarrant County Public Health Director Vinny Taneja. “Because of HIPAA laws regarding the confidentiality of health information, we are not allowed to provide any specific details about this patient.”

COVID-19 causes respiratory illness with cough, fever, and shortness of breath, and may lead to bronchitis and severe pneumonia. United States has now over 4000 reported cases of COVID-19.

Here are the Tarrant County cities with confirmed COVID-19 cases:

Arlington-1

Benbrook – 1

Southlake – 2

White Settlement- 1

“We are releasing this additional information so that these communities and others across Tarrant County will be mindful of basic preventive measures to protect themselves from COVID-19 and other respiratory viruses,” Taneja said.

The sample was tested at a private lab.

The fourth COVID-19 case is a resident of Tarrant County and is a close contact to an American Airlines pilot, who tested positive earlier in the week. That pilot was determined to be an out-of-state resident.

Taneja said “The fourth COVID-19 case was isolated at home and then developed symptoms. No one at DFW Airport came in contact with the fourth patient since symptoms developed.”

“Because of HIPAA laws regarding the confidentiality of health information, we are not allowed to provide specific details about the patient,” Taneja said.

Starting Saturday, cases detected at public health labs that use the CDC assay are considered a confirmed positive. 

Tarrant County Public Health (TCPH) had previously identified a second and third presumptive positive case of COVID-19 in Tarrant County. The second case had traveled from Europe where exposure had occurred and is not related to the county’s first COVID-19 case. The third case is a contact of a Collin County case who is a Tarrant County resident. This third case indicates limited local transmission in the DFW area.

“Because of HIPAA laws regarding the confidentiality of health information, we are not allowed to provide specific details about the patient,” said Taneja. “We are tracing people who may have been exposed during interaction with this person. TCPH’s operations center is monitoring the situation, and continues to work with the CDC, DSHS and our other community partners,” he said.

Tarrant County Public Health’s North Texas Regional Laboratory identified this case as part of recently expanded testing, according to a news release. The lab serves Tarrant and 33 other counties in this region. COVID-19 causes respiratory illness with cough, fever, and shortness of breath, and may lead to bronchitis and severe pneumonia. Though more than 5,000 people worldwide have died as a result of the virus, nearly 70,000 have recovered.

Denton County Public Health (DCPH) has identified the first presumptive positive, travel-related case of COVID-19 in Denton County. The test result is considered presumptive positive until confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

The patient is a man in his thirties whose permanent residence is outside of Denton County; however, the patient is temporarily residing, and in home-isolation, within the Town of Double Oak, according to a news release from Denton County. DCPH is identifying and contacting individuals who may have been exposed. Any individuals identified as having been exposed will be contacted directly by DCPH. No further personal information will be released to protect patient confidentiality due to HIPAA laws.

On Friday, Denton County Judge Andy Eads issued an executive order for disaster declaration for public health emergency effective immediately, strongly urging businesses, schools, places of worship and other community organizations to follow guidance limiting gatherings of 250 or more.

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