COVID-19 coverage graphic

Friday brought East Texas another day of increases in coronavirus cases, now topping 2,400, as 54 more diagnoses were confirmed across the 25-county region, with Titus County’s tally again accounting for the largest portion, as it had on Thursday.

At least 2,403 cases of COVID-19 had been reported in the region as of Friday evening, up from 2,349 a day earlier. No new deaths were recorded Friday, leaving the death toll at 108 for East Texas.

In Gregg County, County Health Authority A.J. Harris cited eight new cases of the novel coronavirus on Friday, raising the county’s total to 195.

Harris said 1,943 total tests had been administered in the county as of Friday, with 1,625 negative results and 123 results pending.

He reported one new recovery, bumping the total recoveries up to 58 so far. The county has had four deaths from the virus.

County Health Authority Dr. Lewis Browne said the new cases were caused by community spread and are not related to nursing homes.

He said the rise in cases can be attributed to more testing in the county, but people still should wear a mask and practice social distancing.

“It looks like with the opening up of the state, people let their guard down,” Browne said. “Instead of, ‘We’re opening up, and you need to be more vigilant so we can go back to our normal lives,’ they are not being vigilant and doing what they want to do.”

County Judge Bill Stoudt reported Friday that two of the 11 positive results received so far from last week’s three-day mobile testing in Longview were Gregg County residents.

Titus, Harrison

In Titus County, Titus County Judge Brian Lee early Friday morning reported 28 new positive cases from Thursday, boosting his county’s cumulative total to 248 cases.

The county on Thursday reported that 59 new cases had been confirmed on Wednesday and two new cases on Thursday, totaling 61 for Thursday’s daily report.

Lee, in a Facebook update, said he does not have accurate information on recoveries, but he estimated that the county has had 20 recoveries. The county has had two deaths.

Titus Regional Medical Center in Mount Pleasant reported Friday morning that it was treating 19 coronavirus patients, five more than it reported were hospitalized Thursday.

In Harrison County, County Judge Chad Sims reported two new positive cases of the virus, raising his county’s total to 230. Sims also confirmed seven new recoveries, raising that total to 67.

The county now has 140 active cases. It has had 23 deaths from the virus.

Lamar, Camp

In Lamar County, five new cases of COVID-19 were confirmed Friday, including that of a 10-year-old girl, the Paris-Lamar County Health District said.

The county now has recorded 133 total cases of the virus, with 43 recoveries and nine deaths.

In Camp County, County Judge A.J. Mason reported five new cases of the novel coronavirus on Friday, increasing his county’s total to 37. The county has had six recoveries, Mason said.

“As we enter the Memorial Day weekend, we fully expect to receive many more positive cases over the next few days. This is expected, as we know there are industry-related cases, and a large volume of tests have been conducted in recent days. As those results become available, we expect to see a high positivity rate, and many more of our Camp County citizens to be affected,” Mason wrote on Facebook. “I ask you to please continue to follow social distance and hygiene recommendations. Enjoy this holiday weekend, safely.”

Morris, Smith

In Morris County, County Judge Doug Reeder confirmed Friday morning that he had been notified Thursday night about two additional cases of the virus in his county, bringing its total of cases to 17.

“This is the fourth straight day with at least one positive reported case and the eighth reported case in the last nine days,” Reeder wrote on Facebook. “Please continue to take this virus seriously and follow responsible social distancing.”

The county has had five recoveries.

Smith County, once the hot spot in East Texas for confirmed cases of coronavirus, reported no new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, according to the Northeast Texas Public Health District.

The county’s cumulative total of positive cases stands at 198, but NET Health reported 10 additional recoveries Friday, increasing the recovery count to 152.

The number of active cases in the county was 42 on Friday, and it has had four deaths from the coronavirus.

Tyler hospitals on Friday were treating 37 patients from East Texas for the coronavirus.

— City Editor Belinda McCoy McLaughlin, Digital Editor Scott Brunner, Staff Writer Kristen Barton and the Tyler Morning Telegraph contributed to this report.