Special Report

COVID-19: Longview, TX Metro Area Among the Safest in America

The U.S. reported over 736,000 new cases of coronavirus over the seven days ending May 24, bringing the total count to more than 82.4 million confirmed cases of COVID-19. There have been more than 994,000 COVID-19-related deaths — the highest death toll of any country.

New cases continue to rise at a faster rate. In the past week, there were an average of 30.7 daily new coronavirus cases per 100,000 Americans — an increase from the week prior, when there were an average of 24.6 daily new coronavirus cases per 100,000 people.

While new data shows that the risk of contracting COVID-19 is high in almost every part of the country, cities continue to be the sites of major outbreaks and superspreader events. Experts agree that the virus is more likely to spread in group settings where large numbers of people routinely have close contact with one another, such as colleges, nursing homes, bars, and restaurants. Metropolitan areas with a high degree of connectivity between different neighborhoods and a large population may be particularly at-risk.

In the 50 largest metro areas, the incidence of COVID-19 grew at an average rate of 34.0 new cases a day per 100,000 residents in the past week — 17.4% greater than the case growth in all counties outside of metro areas.

The Longview, TX metro area consists of Gregg County, Harrison County, Rusk County, and one other county. As of May 24, there were 19,489.0 confirmed cases of COVID-19 per 100,000 Longview residents, the 24th lowest rate of all 383 metro areas with available data. For comparison, the U.S. has so far reported 25,524.4 cases per 100,000 Americans nationwide.

The incidence of coronavirus cases depends on a variety of factors and can vary even between neighboring counties. Within the Longview metro area, Rusk County has the highest incidence of COVID-19 cases. As of May 24, there were 20,228.8 cases per 100,000 residents in Rusk County, the most of any county in Longview, yet not too far from the county with the lowest incidence. In Gregg County, there were 18,844.3 cases per 100,000 residents — the least of any county in Longview.

In order to slow the spread of COVID-19, city and county governments have ordered the closure of thousands of consumer-facing businesses. These measures have led to widespread job loss and record unemployment. In the Longview metro area, unemployment peaked at 12.5% in April 2020. As of November 2021, the metro area’s unemployment rate was 5.6%.

To determine how the incidence of COVID-19 in the Longview, TX metro area compares to the rest of the country, 24/7 Wall St. compiled and reviewed data from state and local health departments. We ranked metro areas based on the number of confirmed COVID-19 cases per 100,000 residents.To estimate the incidence of COVID-19 at the metropolitan level, we aggregated data from the county level using boundary definitions from the U.S. Census Bureau. Population data used to adjust case and death totals came from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2019 American Community Survey and are five-year estimates. Unemployment data is from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and is seasonally adjusted.

These are all the counties in Texas where COVID-19 is slowing (and where it’s still getting worse).

FIPS MSA Population Confirmed COVID-19 cases as of May 24 Confirmed COVID-19 cases as of May 24 per 100,000 residents Cumulative COVID-19 deaths as of May 24 Cumulative COVID-19 deaths as of May 24 per 100,000 residents
30980 Longview, TX 284,796 55,504 19,489.0 1,335 468.8
13140 Beaumont-Port Arthur, TX 395,174 77,043 19,496.0 1,450 366.9
46340 Tyler, TX 227,449 45,669 20,078.8 969 426.0
47020 Victoria, TX 99,674 20,235 20,301.2 445 446.5
28660 Killeen-Temple, TX 444,716 90,811 20,420.0 1,206 271.2
43300 Sherman-Denison, TX 131,014 27,193 20,755.8 636 485.4
12420 Austin-Round Rock-Georgetown, TX 2,114,441 463,998 21,944.2 3,585 169.5
45500 Texarkana, TX-AR 149,292 33,189 22,230.9 719 481.6
10180 Abilene, TX 170,669 39,308 23,031.7 890 521.5
26420 Houston-The Woodlands-Sugar Land, TX 6,884,138 1,609,337 23,377.5 15,981 232.1
36220 Odessa, TX 160,579 37,599 23,414.6 703 437.8
19100 Dallas-Fort Worth-Arlington, TX 7,320,663 1,768,933 24,163.6 18,773 256.4
47380 Waco, TX 268,361 64,872 24,173.4 967 360.3
33260 Midland, TX 173,816 42,167 24,259.6 521 299.7
32580 McAllen-Edinburg-Mission, TX 855,176 208,817 24,418.0 3,910 457.2
48660 Wichita Falls, TX 141,999 34,836 24,532.6 714 502.8
11100 Amarillo, TX 263,776 65,790 24,941.6 1,282 486.0
21340 El Paso, TX 836,062 209,329 25,037.5 3,736 446.9
15180 Brownsville-Harlingen, TX 421,666 106,034 25,146.4 2,034 482.4
18580 Corpus Christi, TX 428,548 111,420 25,999.4 1,835 428.2
17780 College Station-Bryan, TX 258,029 70,725 27,409.7 558 216.3
41700 San Antonio-New Braunfels, TX 2,468,193 689,142 27,920.9 7,871 318.9
31180 Lubbock, TX 316,474 97,404 30,777.9 1,414 446.8
41660 San Angelo, TX 117,986 41,229 34,944.0 553 468.7
29700 Laredo, TX 273,526 96,565 35,303.8 1,036 378.8

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