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More than 130 Texas counties are currently at COVID-19 risk 'tipping point,' data shows

In July, experts created a color-coded risk level map for COVID-19. Current data shows dozens of Texas counties are at the highest level.

AUSTIN, Texas — COVID-19 cases continue to surge throughout Texas as the Thanksgiving holiday approaches. New data shows that for many Texas counties, the number of cases may be reaching a tipping point.

According to a website created by the Brown University School of Public Health, in July, researchers and public health experts created a color-coded COVID-19 risk level map based on the number of new daily cases.

The levels are green (less than one case per 100,000 people), yellow (1-9 cases per 100,000 people), orange (10-24 cases per 100,000 people) and red (25 or more cases per 100,000 people). According to the map, once a community reaches the red risk level, stay-at-home orders become necessary again.

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New data published on the same Brown website shows that as of Nov. 19, at least 135 Texas counties are at that red risk level based on the seven-day moving average of the number of new daily cases per 100,000 people. Only four Texas counties – Cherokee, Kenedy, King and Motley – are currently at the green risk level, according to the data.

Credit: KVUE
This is a look at the risk levels by county in Central Texas. Yellow means there is community spread, orange means there is accelerated spread and red means the county is at the "tipping point."

Because the data is calculated by the number of cases per population size, in the KVUE viewing area, only Mason and Burnet counties are currently at the red risk level, according to the data. Travis, Williamson, Hays, Bastrop, Llano, Lee and Gillespie counties are at the orange level, where, according to the framework, "stay-at-home orders and/or rigorous test and trace programs [are] advised." Blanco, Caldwell, Fayette and Milam counties are at the yellow level. 

According to the Texas Department of State Health Services dashboard, Harris County leads the state in the total number of COVID-19 cases, with 178,811 as of Nov. 20. 

WATCH: Chief medical officer talks new COVID-19 restrictions in Austin ahead of holidays


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