Local private emergency centers are experiencing a rapid increase in patients, including Altus Emergency Center in Lake Jackson, President Kevin Harrington said on a day Brazoria County reported almost 100 new COVID-19 infections.

The 97 new cases reported by the county Friday is 20 more than the previous daily high and almost seven times as many as the county reported June 13.

The rapid increase is from local residents, and patients are not traveling from other areas to the clinics in need of care, Harrington said.

“Our volumes have been higher than normal, but most of the patients in our Lake Jackson office are from the greater Lake Jackson area, and that hasn’t changed since the pandemic began,” he said.

Case numbers are rising because people have dropped their guard, Brazoria County Judge Matt Sebesta said.

“I think we can link it back to the economy opening back up and that people have moved into summertime mode,” Sebesta said. “People need to maintain social distancing, hygiene, and wearing masks if we want to slow the spread of this virus.”

An array of people in Pearland, Lake Jackson, Alvin, Angleton, Bonnie, Brazoria, Clute, Brazoria, Danbury, Freeport, Iowa Colony, Manvel, Sweeny, West Columbia, Jones Creek, Liverpool and Richwood all confirmed positive for the coronavirus. The county reported no probable cases Friday.

County-reported data Friday includes one employee of Oak Village Healthcare and a Ramsey prison unit employee.

The county’s COVID death toll rose to 16.

“One death reported was from was a 99-year-old female which was a Windsong resident,” Sebesta said.

People of all ages need to continue to be cautious of the virus, county spokeswoman Sharon Trower said.

“We want people to continue to take this seriously,” Trower said

Pearland reported 18 cases of the coronavirus, including one boy and two girls between the ages of 10 and 19, and 15 men and women between the ages 20 and 69.

Lake Jackson reported 15 cases of the coronavirus, including five boys and girls 19 and younger, and 10 women and men between the ages of 20 and 59.

Alvin saw 13 cases of the virus, including women and men between the ages of 20 and 59 years old.

Nine positive cases were reported out of Angleton, including women and men between 20 and 79 years old, county data show.

Eight positive cases were reported out of Clute, including three women and three men in their 20s, one woman in her 30s and a boy under the age of 10.

Freeport reported six positive cases and Manvel reported seven, including one girl between the ages of 10 and 19 and women and men between the ages of 20 and 59.

Sweeny reported one girl between 10 and 19, and two men in their 20s.

Richwood had four cases, all women in their 20s, and West Columbia added five, including women and men in their 20s up to their 50s.

One man in his 40s tested for the virus from Bonney, a woman in her 40s and a man in his 20s tested positive in Brazoria, one woman in her 30s from Danbury, a woman in her 30s and a man in his 50s from Iowa Colony, two men in their 40s from Jones Creek, a woman in her 40s from Liverpool and one woman in her 50s from Demi-John.

It is possible the county will further tighten down on the economy if needed, Sebesta said.

“We need to be very clear that we need to slow down the spread, and that is the key in social distancing, not congregating in numbers outside of our household, wear a mask, all of those things go toward lessening the likelihood of spreading the disease,” Sebesta said. “And that’s without the prison numbers influencing those numbers and that’s really without a lot of nursing homes influencing as these are all cases being simply community-spread, from all ages, everywhere.”

If everyone would work together to combat this crisis, he said, things will improve sooner than later.

Brazoria County has 43 probable cases, 839 recoveries, and 16 fatalities. There are 662 confirmed active cases, adding to 1,560 total cases from Brazoria County.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death. The vast majority of people recover.

Alexa Crenshaw is a reporter for The Facts. Contact her at 979-237-0155.

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