Type to search

Coronavirus Featured

Parts of Northeast, Central and East El Paso showing higher levels of COVID-19 infections


Note: This has been updated with Monday’s numbers from the El Paso Department of Public Health.

COVID-19 infections are three times higher in the hardest hit areas of El Paso compared to those with relatively few cases, an El Paso Matters analysis of public health data shows. Areas of Northeast, Central and East El Paso have the highest rates.

El Paso public health officials have been providing a daily map of positive test results by ZIP code. But that map can be misleading because it doesn’t take into account the widely different population numbers in each ZIP code. The county’s most-populous ZIP code — 79936 — has almost 115,000 people. The smallest — 79853 — has fewer than 4,500.

El Paso Matters looked at the number of positive COVID-19 tests per 10,000 people in each ZIP code. These numbers don’t include Fort Bliss because the Army is tracking cases separately and not making public that information, based on a Defense Department directive.

City officials say numbers for individual ZIP codes may decline from day to day as a result of data cleanup.

In the map, higher rates result in darker shading of the ZIP code. Hover over a ZIP code for more detail.

Hardest-hit areas

Countywide, the COVID-19 infection rate was 3.58 cases per 10,000 people as of April 12. Only two ZIP codes — 79901 Downtown and 79836 in the Lower Valley — have not yet reported a COVID-19 infection.

Among ZIP codes with more than 15,000 people, the highest infection rates currently are in 79934 in Northeast El Paso (5.93 cases per 10,000 people); 79905 in Central El Paso (6.15 cases per 10,000 people); and 79935 in East El Paso (7.35 cases per 10,000 people). Many of the cases in 79905 appear to be linked to an outbreak at the El Paso Psychiatric Center, El Paso Matters reported on Friday.

The lowest infection rates in ZIP codes with more than 15,000 people were in 79902 in West-Central (1.40 cases per 10,000 people and 79849 in the Lower Valley (1.94 cases per 10,000 people).

The two largest East El Paso ZIP codes — 79936 and 79938 — have seen a significant rise in reported cases over the past week. The infection rate in 79936 was was 4.27 per 10,000 people as of Monday; in 79938 it had reached 4.69 per 10,000.

El Paso Matters will update the data and map after each daily report from the Department of Public Health.

Correction: An earlier version of this story had an incorrect population figure for ZIP code 79930. It has more than 26,000 residents.

Robert Moore

Robert Moore is the founder and CEO of El Paso Matters. He has been a journalist in the Texas Borderlands since 1986. He spent most of his career at the El Paso Times, serving in a variety of leadership roles. His work has received a number of top journalism honors including the Burl Osborne award for editorial leadership, the James Madison Award from the Texas Freedom of Information Foundation, the Jack Douglas Award from Texas Associated Press Managing Editors and the Frank W. Mayborn Award for Community Leadership from the Texas Press Association. In 2013, he was the recipient of the Benjamin C. Bradlee Editor of the Year Award from the National Press Association. As a freelance journalist, Moore’s work has appeared in the Washington Post, Texas Monthly, ProPublica, National Public Radio, The Guardian and other publications. He has been featured as an expert on the border by CNN, MSNBC, BBC, CBC and PBS.

  • 1

You Might also Like

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *