For more than two weeks, Hunt County officials have reported eight people in the county have died as a result of COVID-19. As it turns out, the total may be double the amount, at 16 deaths.
The office of Hunt County Judge Bobby Stovall reported the eight fatality total Tuesday, based on statistics from the Hunt County Health Department.
Hunt County Director of Homeland Security Richard Hill, who also serves as the director of the Hunt County Health Department, said the numbers were based on the previous method of determining the deaths.
“The state just changed the rules,” Hill said. “This just happened in the last 72 hours.”
The Texas Department of State Health Services reported that as of Monday, COVID-19 fatality data will be counted when the medical certifier attests to the death certificate that COVID-19 is a cause of death.
“Or when it is signed off as a COVID-19 death by the attending physician,” Hill said.
The state agency said the change means fatalities may be counted sooner and demographic data will be more comprehensive. Fatalities can now be displayed by date of death and are reported by county of residence.
Beginning today, the Herald-Banner will be reporting the number of COVID-19 related fatalities based on the information from the Texas Department of State Health Services.