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Texas posts single-day coronavirus death record

Texas posts single-day coronavirus death record
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Texas reported its highest single-day total of COVID-19-related deaths on Wednesday.

The Lone Star State recorded 313 new fatalities on Wednesday, according to data from the Texas Department of Health and Human Services. Texas, which recorded its first COVID-19 death in March, has now reported at total of 6,190 fatalities.

The new deaths reported Wednesday could have occurred any time in the past 10 days, officials noted. 

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The increase comes after Texas officials adjusted how COVID-19 deaths are counted. Instead of relying on local and regional public health reports, officials are counting death certificates that list the cause of death as COVID-19. Certificates have to be filed within 10 days of a person's death.

Harris County, where Houston is located, has reported the most deaths at 1,182, followed by Dallas County with 610 and Bexar County with 521. 

The state also reported 9,042 newly confirmed coronavirus cases on Wednesday, bringing Texas’s total to 403,307. It now trails only California, Florida and New York in infections. 

Coronavirus cases in Texas began surging in mid-June before the death toll's rise in July. 

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott (R) had instituted a statewide mask mandate earlier in July amid the rise in cases and deaths.

The grim milestone for Texas came the same day the U.S. recorded 150,000 COVID-19 deaths.

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Three U.S. Army Reserve medical task forces were sent to South Texas earlier this week, The Associated Press noted. Three other active-duty Army medical task forces and five Navy medical teams had been deployed earlier this month.

The Texas Democratic Party released a statement in response to the highest single-day death toll, with spokesman Abhi Rahman saying “the coronavirus is now out of control.”

“Instead of following the advice of doctors and experts, Donald TrumpDonald TrumpGiuliani used provisional ballot to vote in 2020 election, same method he disparaged in fighting to overturn results Trump gets lowest job approval rating in final days as president Fox News' DC managing editor Bill Sammon to retire MORE and Greg Abbott tried to discredit them to appease their right-wing lobbyist, donors, and base, even things as simple as wearing a mask,” he said. “This is emblematic of the modern-day Republican Party: putting the pursuit of power over science and logic.”