Denton County now counting rapid COVID-19 tests toward confirmed cases

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Denton County Public Health (DCPH) announced 1,240 total new laboratory-confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Denton County, of which 493 are active cases.  This increases the cumulative, countywide total to 13,748 confirmed COVID-19 cases.  DCPH also reported 988 newly recovered cases of COVID-19, increasing the countywide recovery total to 11,845.

Within today’s totals, DCPH is including 1,181 positive COVID-19 antigen tests that have been reported and investigated within the last few weeks.

The antigen test detects certain proteins in the virus. Using a nasal or throat swab to get a fluid sample, antigen tests can produce results in minutes.

In response to the change in testing trends, DCPH will also report antigen positive tests daily.  This additional reporting allows DCPH and community members to have a better understanding of COVID-19 transmission within the county, where antigen testing has become more accessible and more common locally.  Antigen test recoveries are also included in today’s totals.

“Several weeks ago, our team reminded providers to report positive antigen tests.  As we investigated both PCR and antigen positive cases, we noticed a significant shift in the testing behaviors of our community members,” stated Dr. Matt Richardson, DCPH Director in a press release.  “More community members are utilizing rapid antigen testing and our data now reflects that.  Data integrity is maintained and enhanced with the reporting of these new cases, as each positive antigen test is investigated in the same way DCPH investigates molecular tests.”

DCPH is providing a free drive-thru COVID-19 testing center on Friday, October 9, at University of North Texas’ Discovery Park at 3940 N. Elm St in Denton.  Eligible community members are those who are residents of Denton County who pre-register and have not previously tested positive for COVID-19.  Pre-registration is required and appointments are available starting at 8 AM.  To pre-register, call DCPH at 940-349-2585.

For additional COVID-19 data including active case information by municipality, hospital capacity, and ventilator utilization, visit dentoncounty.gov/COVIDstats.  For information regarding DCPH’s upcoming testing centers, please visit dentoncounty.gov/COVID19testing.  For additional COVID-19 health and safety recommendations, visit dentoncounty.gov/COVID19.

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