AUSTIN (KXAN) — Fayette and Lampasas counties have been upgraded to high risk for COVID-19 in the latest weekly update from the CDC. Three others were downgraded.

Each week since Feb. 24, the CDC assigns a “COVID-19 Community Level” to each county nationwide based on how the virus is impacting local populations.

Fayette and Lampasas join Caldwell, Hays and Milam in the high risk category. Blanco and Mason Counties were downgraded from high to medium category, while Gillespie County dropped from high to low risk.

Bastrop, Burnet, Lee, Llano, Travis and Williamson Counties both remain at medium risk, while San Saba County remains at low risk.

How are the Community Levels calculated?

Low, medium and high-risk categories are determined based on three factors: number of new cases in the past seven days, new hospital admissions in the past seven days, and percent of staffed hospital beds being used by COVID-19 patients.

The first consideration is the number of new cases per 100,000 residents over the past seven days. If the number of new cases is higher than 200, the county cannot be considered low risk.

The thresholds for hospital admissions and inpatient bed usage then change depending on whether the county has fewer or more than 200 new cases per 100,000 residents.

Here’s a look at the numbers in each county in the KXAN viewing area. Remember, the number of new cases is considered first. If that number than 200, the county cannot be considered low risk. The thresholds for hospital admissions and inpatient bed usage then change depending on whether the county has fewer or more than 200 new cases per 100,000 residents.

Meanwhile, 77% of Texas’ population lives in a county rated high risk, including Houston, Dallas, Fort Worth, San Antonio, El Paso, Corpus Christi and Brownsville.

Approximately 19% of the state’s population lives in a medium risk county, while about 4% live in a low risk county.

The CDC has the following recommendations for people depending on which COVID-19 Community Level their county is in:

Low Risk

  • Stay up-to-date with COVID vaccines
  • Get tested if you have symptoms

Medium Risk

  • Same precautions as low risk and:
  • Talk to your healthcare provider about whether you should wear a mask and take other precautions if you are at high risk for severe illness

High Risk

  • Same precautions as medium risk and:
  • Wear a mask indoors in public
  • Additional precautions may be needed for people at high risk for severe illness