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Why agencies are reporting different coronavirus case numbers for the same county

On Thursday, one website showed Travis County had 23 confirmed coronavirus cases but another only showed seven. So why is there a difference?

AUSTIN, Texas — If you're trying to track the number of coronavirus cases, you'll find the state and the county sometimes report different numbers.

On the city and county's website, it shows how many coronavirus cases are in Austin-Travis County. As of Thursday afternoon, the count was 23. 

If you head over to the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) website, it showed seven cases in Travis County on Thursday. 

So why is there a difference? 

For the city and county, Austin Public Health (APH) reports anyone in Austin-Travis County who is infected, which means if a person with coronavirus lives in the county, is treated in the county or is hospitalized in the county, that person will be added to APH's count. 

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However, the state's website counts cases differently. For DSHS to count a case in Travis County, the person with coronavirus would need to be a Travis County resident.

For example, if someone who lives in Williamson County tests positive for coronavirus but gets treated in Travis County, then APH would add that person to its count, but the DSHS would not.

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