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RGV COVID-19 Live Blog: Second Death Related to Community Transmission Reported In Cameron County

Texas Public Radio is updating information on COVID-19 in the Rio Grande Valley here. You can find the latest news from TPR in San Antonio here. Other NPRstations that are part of The Texas Newsroom are also live-blogging, including Houston Public MediaKERA in Dallas and KUT in Austin

The statewide coronavirus hotline is 2-1-1. CDC guidelines on what you need to know and what to do if you are sick with COVID-19 can be found here in English and Spanish, and embedded at the end of this live blog.
TPR was founded by and is supported by our community. If you value our commitment to the highest standards of responsible journalism and are able to do so, please consider making your gift of support today.

Here's what we know...

Data visualizations are maintained and published by journalist Ronnie Garza on the website https://www.rgvcovid19info.com. Hover over the graph to view updated values

Thursday, May 7

9 p.m. – Second community COVID-19 death, 14 new cases reported in Cameron County

Cameron County Public Health confirmed a second death connected to community transmission on Thursday, bringing the total number of deaths in the county to 20. The 82-year-old male from Brownsville was a previously reported case and died at Solara Hospital on Thursday.

The majority of deaths reported in Cameron County have been connected to case clusters in area nursing homes.

Fourteen additional cases were also announced on Thursday, including seven residents of the Windsor Atrium nursing home who tested positive for COVID-19. The facility is now connected to 8 deaths and positive cases in 32 employees and 54 residents.  

Thursday's reports include nine cases from Harlingen, four cases from Brownsville, and one case of a 44-year-old female from Los Fresnos. All the new reports are linked to previous case of COVID-19, with the exception of a 59-year-old male from Brownsville who contracted the disease from community transmission.

8 p.m. – More details, cases confirmed in connection to positive case in Roma

Starr County released information on its Facebook page Thursdayshowing four additional cases of COVID-19 in a family tied to a case found in Roma, Texas earlier this week. The individuals who tested positive are now in quarantine. 

There are now seven active cases of COVID-19 in Starr County. In total, the county has seen 14 positive cases with seven recoveries.

7 p.m. – Nine more test positive in Hidalgo County 

There are now 368 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Hidalgo County after nine more individuals tested positive on Thursday. Two people were also released from isolation today, bringing the total number of recovered cases to 218.

The nine new reports are residents of Alamo, Alton, Donna, Edinburg, Pharr and Weslaco. The youngest cases are males in their 20s: two from Alamo and one from Pharr. The oldest case reported is a female in her 70s from Alton. 

There are currently 14 patients in Hidalgo County hospitals receiving treatment for the disease with three in intensive care.

5 p.m. – Hidalgo County employee tests positive for COVID-19

An employee of the Hidalgo County Fire Marshal's office at 1903 North Knight's Drive in Pharr has tested positive for COVID-19. 
The employee has been ordered to self-isolate, Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez said in a statement.

County health officials are tracing the employees interactions with the public and remaining employees in the Pharr office are "adjusting their normal work routines" while practicing social distancing. Hidalgo County employees are currently required to wear face masks "at work and in the vicinity of other people."

The Commissioners Court voted to mandate face coverings for members of the public when entering county facilities earlier this week on Tuesday. The Pharr office will remain open to the public after sanitation.

4 p.m. Positive COVID-19 case at Brownsville nursing home

The Spanish Meadows nursing and assisted living facility in Brownsville found one case of COVID-19 in a new resident.

According toThe Monitor, a notice was posted on the door of the facility Thursday "informing the public of the positive test." The resident had reportedly been released from an area hospital before arriving at Spanish Meadows, then readmitted back to the hospital immediately.

Outbreaks at nursing homes are responsible for about 36 percent of cases and the majority of COVID-related deaths in Cameron County.

12 p.m. 852 confirmed cases, 27 deaths connected to COVID-19 in the Valley

As of Thursday morning, the four Valley-area counties have reported the following counts: 

  • 359 cases, 7 deaths in Hidalgo County
  • 469 cases, 19 deaths in Cameron County
  • 14 cases, 1 death in Willacy County
  • 10 cases in Starr County

| Find previous COVID-19 blogs here |

Community Helpline Numbers

Statewide COVID-19 Resources

  • 2-1-1 (option 6)

Cameron County

  • 956-247-3650 (24/7) 

Hidalgo County

  • 956-292-7765 from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Willacy and Starr Counties

  • 956-421-5505
CDC Guidelines in English and Spanish


Jan Ross Piedad Sakian is TPR’s News Operations Producer. In this role, she develops strategy on collaborative and digital initiatives for the station. Since 2016, Jan Ross has served in a coordinating capacity for TPR’s state and national partners, including The Texas Newsroom.
Reynaldo Leaños Jr. can be reached at reynaldo@tpr.org and on Twitter at @ReynaldoLeanos