The first reported case in Texas was detected in Harris County on Dec 6. As of Dec 16, at least three counties in the Houston area have confirmed cases of the variant that was first reported in South Africa.
Editor's note: The video in this story originally aired on Dec. 9
City of Houston
Dec. 9: Houston Methodist reported a ninth case. All nine of those infected tested positive for COVID-19 in early December. The hospital didn't say whether the patients were vaccinated or how severe their cases are. They did say the patients live all over the city.
“It is clear Omicron has been in Houston since at least Nov. 29 based on wastewater sampling, but it was likely here sooner,” said Dr. David Persse, chief medical officer for the City of Houston. “This timeline is remarkable since South Africa’s rise in cases began the week of Nov. 13 and the World Health Organization identified it as a variant of concern on Nov. 24.”
Dec. 10: The Houston Health Department reported two additional cases of the omicron variant: A woman in her 20s and a male in his 30s. Neither had traveled recently. No other details were given.
Dec. 11: Houston Methodist reported another 12 cases of omicron, bringing the total from the hospital system to 31.
Dec. 6: Harris County reported the first case in Texas on Dec. 6. County Judge Lina Hidalgo said the woman is in her 40s, lives in the northwest part of the county, and hadn't traveled recently.
Fort Bend County
All three people had received two COVID-19 vaccines, but not a booster, and reported only mild symptoms. They all said they hadn't traveled recently.
Health officials said that a man between 41-50 years old tested positive for the variant. According to the district, he is immunocompromised and fully vaccinated. He also has no travel history.
It hasn't been confirmed if the man is showing any symptoms or has been hospitalized.
Montgomery County Public Health confirmed on Dec 16 that two county residents make up some of the omicron cases identified by Houston Methodist. At this time, no other information is available.