Coronavirus pandemic

BELTON — Bell County officials estimated Monday morning that so far the county has helped vaccinate about half of its residents against COVID-19.

Bell County Judge David Blackburn said that so far the county has helped administer just under 200,000 doses of the vaccine. This number does not include those vaccines given out by the military at Fort Hood and at the Veterans Affairs hospital in Temple.

Currently, Blackburn said vaccines in the county and around the state have become more plentiful and are available to anyone who wants one.

“We do have plenty of vaccines right now,” Blackburn said. “Vaccines are plentiful across the state, and across the country right now for that matter, at the moment.”

Blackburn said the county is also looking to see if it needs to continue distributing vaccines at a county level, instead leaving it to other groups, though no decision has been made.

County officials also pointed out that these other organizations, such as local pharmacies and primary health providers, would hopefully be the ones to administer any booster shots that might be needed.

COVID-19 incidence rate

The incidence of new COVID-19 cases in the county was down slightly Monday, continuing to remain mostly level, according to the Bell County Public Health District.

The new incidence rate is now at 67 cases of the virus per 100,000 people in the county. This is down from the 70.5 cases per 100,000 seen on Thursday, the last time the district reported county numbers.

Dr. Amanda Robison-Chadwell, director of the district, said the county is currently seeing 243 active cases of the virus.

“Our new total number of cases of COVID-19 is 22,295 with 21,623 recoveries,” Robison-Chadwell said.

Robison-Chadwell said the county also has not seen any new deaths over the weekend, staying at 429.

School districts

Temple Independent School District continued to show no new COVID-19 cases on its seven-day dashboard Monday.

Belton ISD showed that it had five cases of the virus currently active among its campuses on its dashboard. One case is at Leon Heights Elementary, one at Tarver Elementary, one at Belton Middle School, one at Belton High School and one at Lake Belton High School.

Killeen ISD reported having 20 cases of the virus Monday, with 15 students and five staff members, according to its seven day dashboard.

Salado ISD Superintendent Michael Novotny said the district did not have any new cases or any active cases among its students or staff.