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Coronavirus updates in Central Texas: Wednesday schools and stat tracker

Here are the latest COVID-19 updates in Central Texas for Wednesday, Nov. 17.

AUSTIN, Texas — Editor's note: This blog is no longer being updated. Click here for Thursday's blog.

KVUE is keeping you updated with the latest coronavirus and COVID-19 news in the Austin area. 

Scroll down for the top headlines and latest updates in KVUE's Nov. 17 live blog.

COVID-19 numbers:

  • Texas: More than 3.5 million cases have been reported in the state, and more than 71,700 people in Texas have died, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services.
  • Central Texas counties: 
    • Austin-Travis County: The seven-day moving average for new hospital admissions is 13, and an average of 118 people are hospitalized. The seven-day moving average for new cases is 95. Since the beginning of the pandemic, 121,508 cases have been reported and at least 1,181 people have died.
    • Hays County: There are currently 393 active cases, and 11 people are currently hospitalized (9 unvaccinated, 2 vaccinated). Since the beginning of the pandemic, at least 30,090 confirmed cases have been reported and at least 403 people have died. 
    • Williamson County: There are 86 new cases of coronavirus in Williamson County. Eighteen percent of hospital beds are available, and 9% of ICU beds are available. Since the beginning of the pandemic, at least 66,549 cases have been reported and at least 724 people have died.
  • Central Texas school districts: 
    • Austin ISD: As of Nov. 17, there are a total of 28 new COVID-19 cases (24 students, 3 employees) and a total of 0 new exposures. Since Aug. 16, there have been 1,491 cumulative positive cases (1,221 students, 244 employees, 26 others) and 7,870 cumulative exposures (7,738 students, 110 employees, 22 others).
    • Round Rock ISD: As of Nov. 17, there are 10 new positive cases (10 students) and 101 new "close contacts" (100 students, 1 employee). There have been 1,983 total cumulative positive cases (1,720 students, 263 employees) and 16,487 total cumulative "close contacts" (15,180 students, 1,307 employees).
    • Leander ISD: For the week of Nov. 14-Nov. 19, there have been 34 total positive cases. There have been 1,759 total cumulative positive cases.
    • Pflugerville ISD: For the week of Nov. 15-Nov. 19, there have been 4 total positive cases. There have been 1,143 total cumulative positive cases.
    • Hays CISD: As of Nov. 17, there are 26 active student cases and 10 active staff cases. There have been a total of 995 cumulative student cases and 175 cumulative staff cases.
  • Texas Public Schools (2021-22 school year; updated on Fridays with data from the previous Monday-Sunday)
    • Cumulative positive student cases: 215,799
    • Cumulative positive staff cases: 39, 688

For a look at COVID-19 data across all of the state's counties, click here. KVUE is tracking COVID-19 data from five school districts in Central Texas. Many school districts have their own COVID-19 dashboard.


5:10 p.m. – Travis County reported another COVID-19 death on Wednesday along with 147 new confirmed cases, bringing the total to 121,508 cases and 1,181 deaths since the start of the pandemic. At least 119,328 people have recovered from the virus.

Travis County currently has 118 people hospitalized with COVID-19, with 51 in the ICU and 32 on ventilators.

3:50 p.m. – Texas is reporting an average of 2,436 new COVID-19 cases per day over the past week, flat from a week ago and down 44% from a month ago. There were 122 new COVID-19 deaths reported in Texas on Wednesday, bringing the total to 71,844 since the start of the pandemic. There are 2,720 COVID-19 patients in Texas hospitals statewide, down 2% from a week ago and down 45% from a month ago.

The Austin metro area is reporting an average of 180 new COVID-19 cases per day over the past week. The area is seeing an average of 12.9 COVID-19 hospital admissions per day over the past week. There are 134 COVID-19 patients in Austin-area hospitals, the fewest since July 12. There are 63 COVID-19 patients in Austin-area ICUs, with 55 available beds remaining (11% availability).

Texas is at 54% of the 5+ population fully vaccinated.

2:10 p.m. – From 4 p.m. to 6 p.m., City of Austin and University of Texas officials are honoring science and health leaders who have helped develop today's COVID-19 vaccines.

The event will take place at UT Austin's Main Mall on the south steps of the UT Tower. 

Highlights include:

  • Appearances by vaccine-developing scientist Professor Jason McLellan, Mayor Steve Adler, Austin Medical Director Dr. Desmar Walkes, College of Natural Sciences Dean David Vanden Bout and UT Health Austin Chief Clinical Officer Dr. Amy Young
  • Interactive displays with student messages thanking scientists and health professionals for their work with vaccines
  • Pop-up COVID-19 vaccine clinic, where Dr. McLellan will be among those to receive a booster shot
  • Live performance by Nané who performed at ACL Fest and include UT Austin alumni Daniel Sahad and Ian Green
  • Student dance and music performances from Roustabouts Dance Company and Absolute Pitch
  • Liquid nitrogen ice cream, photo stands, balloons and giveaways
  • In honor of International Education Week at UT, recognition of a team of campus scientists whose newest vaccine technology is in clinical trials now in Thailand, Vietnam, Brazil and Mexico.

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