Widespread availability of COVID-19 vaccines helped reduce the number of El Pasoans dying in 2021, but the number of deaths remained well above pre-pandemic levels, according to state data obtained by El Paso Matters.
The number of births to El Paso County residents declined again in 2021, continuing a trend that has been driving down school enrollment for years.
El Paso’s deaths soared in 2020 during the COVID-19 pandemic, according to preliminary numbers from the Texas Department of State Health Services. The nearly 8,400 deaths among El Paso County residents was 47% higher than any other year in El Paso history.
Deaths fell to about 7,200 in 2021, according to preliminary state data. Still, the 2021 death numbers are 26% higher than any year prior to 2020. El Paso’s death toll during the two years of the pandemic has been about 4,000 more than what would have been expected based on pre-pandemic trends.
The number of births to El Paso residents in 2021 fell below 11,000 for the first time since the 1970s, according to birth records.
El Paso’s population of people 18 and younger fell by 8% between the 2010 and 2020 censuses.
Cover photo: Sonia Lopez Espinal, director of nursing for Women’s Services at The Hospitals of Providence Transmountain Campus, displays a labor and delivery room that is prepped for a birth. (Corrie Boudreaux/El Paso Matters)