Seventy-five more people tested positive for coronavirus on Wednesday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases in Bexar County to 890.

Mayor Ron Nirenberg said the sharp increase in positive cases – the largest to date in Bexar County – is due in part to lab results City officials had been waiting to receive from a federal testing lab, in addition to results from private and contracted testing labs.

Four more people died, including another patient at the Southeast Nursing and Rehabilitation Center, bringing the total number of deaths to 37, 17 of them at Southeast.

Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff said two inmates at the Bexar County Adult Detention Center are among the new cases, bringing the total to 10 inmates. One has been transferred to University Hospital for treatment.

While the increase is concerning, Wolff said, “we are doing a good job of staying on top of it.”

“Our numbers are not growing as fast as other jails throughout the country.”

On Wednesday, the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District posted four coronavirus forecasting models data scientists have built to help officials better predict when Bexar County will see its outbreak peak.

However, Metro Health Director Dawn Emerick cautioned people to not “read into the models” because data changes every day and City officials are also using other data sources to help determine when the outbreak might peak locally.

Emerick said a team of health experts will help officials interpret the models and use the information to determine which safety protocols to keep in place and when it will be safe to change the protocol.

Wolff said that while Gov. Greg Abbott has been speaking about “phasing out” social distancing protocols, “just because we hear that doesn’t mean we don’t have a problem.”

If we reduce social distancing and safety measures, “we are still going to have death and people getting the disease. We have to continue to use face masks, washing hands, and social distancing.”

Roseanna Garza

Roseanna Garza reports on health and bioscience for the San Antonio Report.