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'You can be killing people without knowing' | Local officials beg Houstonians to get tested for COVID-19 as testing numbers decline

Medical officials said you should get tested for COVID-19 even if you're not showing symptoms.

HOUSTON — Houston's elected officials are begging people to get tested for COVID-19 as the city saw four consecutive days of increased daily new cases.

The Houston Health Department reported 1,456 new cases and 14 newly reported coronavirus deaths on Saturday, making it the fourth-straight day of at least 1,000 new cases

From July 17 to July 23, the city was averaging 820 new reported cases a day.

Houston Health Authority Dr. David Persse said Friday that fewer people were going to get tested at the city's testing sites at Delmar and Butler Stadiums.

He said bad weather was one factor, citing sites being completely closed or temporarily closed six times in July due to inclement weather. The other factor was the July 4 holiday weekend.

The city reported a 23 percent positivity rate on Friday, which means out of every five people tested for coronavirus, at least one person tests positive.

Houston reported more deaths and more new cases in July than in all other months of the pandemic combined. 

“We may be tired and bored of the virus, but the virus is not tired and bored of us," said Mayor Sylvester Turner. 

RELATED: Map: Keeping track of Houston-area coronavirus cases

RELATED: Where you can get a free coronavirus test in the Houston area and nearby counties

United Memorial Medical Center Chief Medical Officer Doctor Joseph Varon said UMMC sites are also showing a 1 in 5 positivity rate. 

He said 50 percent of those positive tests show no symptoms, and can potentially infect dozens of others.

“In all honesty, you can be killing people without knowing," said Dr. Varon.

Texas reported 9,539 new cases and 268 newly reported deaths on August 1.

The state reported more new cases and more newly reported deaths in July than in all other months of the pandemic combined.

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