Last Thursday an interactive map was released that showed which U.S. counties SHOULD have residents masking indoors. The map, based on data and recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control, last week indicated that El Paso and Dona Ana Counties were NOT recommended to mask indoors. This has now changed.

The nationwide made had previously shown that El Paso and Dona Ana were listed as “moderate”…meaning people in those counties who had been vaccinated weren’t advised to wear a mask indoors. A quick check of the map, which can be viewed here shows that both counties now have transmission rates that are listed as “high”.

Last week, when the map was first published, El Paso County had a COVID-19 case rate of 42 per 100,000 people and a positivity rate of 5.8%. The map today (Wednesday, Aug. 4) shows a case rate of 79 per 100K and a positivity rate of 7.1%. In Dona Ana County the previous case rate had been 39 per 100K with a 4% positivity rate. Those numbers are now 72 and 4.9%.

El Paso and Las Cruces should not feel alone in this category. As of today, 4/5 of all U.S. counties, including Puerto Rico’s municipalities, fall into the “high” or “masks advised” category. Many of the counties that are still in the “moderate” category also have a notation of “data suppressed”. The CDC says this means that data may be incomplete and may not mean that the cases and percentages are necessarily as low as tabulated.

In Taylor and Jones Counties (Abilene) the numbers are 168 per 100K and 14.5% and 90 and 13.6% respectively.

Tom Green County (San Angelo) currently is listed at 496 per 100K and a positivity rate of 24%.

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