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COVID-19: How Cases in the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX Metro Area Compare to Other Major Metros

24/7 Wall St. logo 24/7 Wall St. 6/17/2022 Evan Comen

© Provided by 24/7 Wall St. The U.S. reported over 741,000 new cases of coronavirus over the seven days ending June 14, bringing the total count to more than 84.5 million confirmed cases of COVID-19. There have been more than 1,001,000 COVID-19-related deaths -- the highest death toll of any country.

New cases continue to rise at a steady rate. In the past week, there were an average of 32.7 daily new coronavirus cases per 100,000 Americans -- essentially unchanged from the week prior, when there were an average of 32.5 daily new coronavirus cases per 100,000 people.

While new data shows that the risk of contracting COVID-19 is high in almost every part of the country, cities continue to be the sites of major outbreaks and superspreader events. Experts agree that the virus is more likely to spread in group settings where large numbers of people routinely have close contact with one another, such as colleges, nursing homes, bars, and restaurants. Metropolitan areas with a high degree of connectivity between different neighborhoods and a large population may be particularly at-risk.

In the 50 largest metro areas, the incidence of COVID-19 grew at an average rate of 37.5 new cases a day per 100,000 residents in the past week -- 19.9% greater than the case growth in all counties outside of metro areas.

The Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX metro area consists of Harris County, Fort Bend County, Montgomery County, and six other counties. As of June 14, there were 23,995.4 confirmed cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 Houston residents, 8.4% lower than the national rate. For comparison, the U.S. has so far reported 26,197.7 cases per 100,000 Americans nationwide.


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The incidence of coronavirus cases depends on a variety of factors and can vary even between neighboring counties. Within the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land metro area, Galveston County has the highest incidence of COVID-19 cases. As of June 14, there were 30,012.2 cases per 100,000 residents in Galveston County, the most of any county in Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, and far greater than the county with the lowest incidence. In Waller County, there were 19,071.2 cases per 100,000 residents -- the least of any county in Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land.

In order to slow the spread of COVID-19, city and county governments have ordered the closure of thousands of consumer-facing businesses. These measures have led to widespread job loss and record unemployment. In the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land metro area, unemployment peaked at 14.7% in April 2020. As of November 2021, the metro area’s unemployment rate was 5.6%.

To determine how the incidence of COVID-19 in the Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX metro area compares to the rest of the country, 24/7 Wall St. compiled and reviewed data from state and local health departments. We ranked metro areas based on the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents.To estimate the incidence of COVID-19 at the metropolitan level, we aggregated data from the county level using boundary definitions from the U.S. Census Bureau. Population data used to adjust case and death totals came from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey and are five-year estimates. Unemployment data is from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and is seasonally adjusted.

These are all the counties in Texas where COVID-19 is slowing (and where it's still getting worse).

FIPS MSA Population Confirmed COVID-19 cases as of June 14 Confirmed COVID-19 cases as of June 14 per 100,000 residents Cumulative COVID-19 deaths as of June 14 Cumulative COVID-19 deaths as of June 14 per 100,000 residents
30980 Longview, TX 284,796 55,807 19,595.4 1,336 469.1
13140 Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX 395,174 79,005 19,992.5 1,455 368.2
46340 Tyler, TX 227,449 46,047 20,245.0 970 426.5
47020 Victoria, TX 99,674 20,527 20,594.1 445 446.5
28660 Killeen-Temple, TX 444,716 92,032 20,694.6 1,214 273.0
43300 Sherman-Denison, TX 131,014 27,406 20,918.4 637 486.2
45500 Texarkana, TX-AR 149,292 33,446 22,403.1 721 482.9
12420 Austin-Round Rock-Georgetown, TX 2,114,441 476,378 22,529.7 3,604 170.4
10180 Abilene, TX 170,669 39,702 23,262.6 892 522.6
36220 Odessa, TX 160,579 37,748 23,507.4 705 439.0
26420 Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 6,884,138 1,651,878 23,995.4 16,006 232.5
33260 Midland, TX 173,816 42,431 24,411.4 522 300.3
47380 Waco, TX 268,361 65,681 24,474.9 968 360.7
19100 Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 7,320,663 1,794,031 24,506.4 18,803 256.8
32580 McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX 855,176 213,173 24,927.4 3,916 457.9
48660 Wichita Falls, TX 141,999 35,491 24,993.8 715 503.5
11100 Amarillo, TX 263,776 66,208 25,100.1 1,283 486.4
21340 El Paso, TX 836,062 212,762 25,448.1 3,741 447.5
15180 Brownsville-Harlingen, TX 421,666 108,710 25,781.1 2,036 482.8
18580 Corpus Christi, TX 428,548 112,914 26,348.0 1,835 428.2
17780 College Station-Bryan, TX 258,029 71,669 27,775.6 560 217.0
41700 San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX 2,468,193 702,108 28,446.2 7,894 319.8
31180 Lubbock, TX 316,474 98,140 31,010.4 1,414 446.8
41660 San Angelo, TX 117,986 41,607 35,264.4 554 469.5
29700 Laredo, TX 273,526 98,160 35,886.9 1,036 378.8
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