Hidalgo County announced 22 additional deaths related to COVID-19 on Thursday, while another 1,248 people tested positive for the virus.

The 22 deaths raise the total number of fatalities to 240 in the county. The new cases raise the total number of positive cases to 10,492. 

“I am deeply saddened by the loss of 22 people from our community. My prayers and condolences go out to the families and friends of these individuals,” Hidalgo County Judge Richard F. Cortez said in a news release. “To those currently battling this disease and who are at home, I urge you to remain quarantined so that you may not infect a loved one or anyone in our community.”

According to the release, the spike in cases is due to the mass federal testing conducted at Bert Ogden Arena in Edinburg last week. Health officials said to expect large numbers of positive results due to the high number of tests from the testing site. 

The county also announced that there are currently 968 people hospitalized with complications from COVID-19, of which 249 are in intensive care units. 

A total of 236 people were released from isolation Thursday, meaning that they have been symptom-free for 10 days. This includes three days without a fever. There are 5,861 net active cases.

Cameron County also recorded 10 additional COVID-19 related deaths on Thursday, raising its death toll to 89.

The deceased include eight women ages 63, 65, 82, 85, 85, 87, 92 and 93, as well as two men ages 90 and 92. 

All of the individuals were residents of The Rio at Fox Hollow.  

The county further confirmed an additional 335 new cases of COVID-19, raising the total number of COVID-19 cases to 5,240 in Cameron County. 

There have been an additional 53 individuals who have recovered from the virus in Cameron, raising the total number of recovered individuals to 2,723.

“Cameron County Public Health continues to work with the six nursing home facilities and one detention center in addressing the COVID-19 outbreaks,” a news release read. “To date, the Cameron County cases arising from the Port Isabel Service Processing Center has 12 employees and 77 detainees who have tested positive.”

The six nursing homes include Alta Vista, Brownsville Nursing & Rehab, Ebony Lake, Harlingen Nursing & Rehab, Rio Fox Hollow, and SCC at Valley Grande.

The news comes on the same day that Willacy County announced 30 additional cases of COVID-19, bringing the total there to 440.

The new cases include three individuals in their 10s, two in their teens, eight in their 20s, one in their 30s, five in their 40s, six in their 50s, three in their 60s, one in their 70s and another in their 80s.

“Our officials and staff continue to work very closely with our neighboring counties and state health services department,” a news release from the county read. “The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) will conduct case investigations on this, and all positive COVID-19 cases that arise and ensure that proper isolation and 14-day quarantine is strictly adhered to.

“In addition, DSHS will be sure family members stay isolated and quarantined as well and will be sure the family has supplies needed to be able to stay at home and follow protocol.”

Anyone with questions about COVID-19 or information about testing is encouraged to call the DSHS hotline at (956) 421-5505.

Starr County Health Authority Dr. Jose Vazquez announced 103 new cases of COVID-19 in the county on Wednesday.

Late Thursday, Vazquez confirmed an additional 44 cases, for a total of 1,362 in the county.

Before the 44 cases were announced Thursday, the county had last reported 386 individuals who recovered from the coronavirus and currently 927 people receiving medical care in the county. 

Five people have died from COVID-19 in Starr County.