EL PASO, Texas -- El Paso Mayor Oscar Leeser and County Judge Ricardo Samaniego held a joint news conference Monday afternoon from City Hall to provide an update on the Covid-19 pandemic in the community.
The officials said there have been no confirmed cases of the Delta variant as yet in El Paso, but there have been 277 people to date who have tested Covid-positive despite having been vaccinated.
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Meantime, Leeser said the city's coronavirus testing facility has now to northeast El Paso; using cares act funding, the city purchased a building across the street from the 911 Center to house the testing lab.
As ABC-7 has previously reported, El Paso lacks the capacity to test in its local lab for the Delta variant, but officials indicated Monday that random samples were being sent to federal and state labs for such testing.
"Have we been testing for it? Yes, we test the same way you would test for Covid-19 and we have been sending out random samples, just like every city has, to the state and the federal government," explained Leeser.
Over the past week, officials said there were 251 new cases of Covid-19 occurring, of which 10% required hospitalizations. Of those new infections, 76% involved un-vaccinated El Pasoans, while 31% involved people who had recently traveled and are believed to have brought the virus back with them
The city and county leaders also noted that El Paso's current vaccination rate is at 70% for at least one-dose as the community moves closer to so-called herd immunity.
You can watch the entire news conference from the city and county in the video player below.