Updated on May 10 with additional cases.
Outbreaks at local nursing homes are driving the death tolls in Rockwall and Lamar counties, accounting for all the people they've lost to the disease.
The timelines are similar for each county. On April 26, Rockwall reported its first death. Officials would later say on May 5 that the person had been a resident at the Broadmoor Medical Lodge.
On the same day, Lamar officials first addressed the outbreak at one of the nursing homes in their county, where 41 people associated with the Paris Healthcare Nursing Home had tested positive for the disease.
Two days later on April 28, officials announced the first round of testing at the Broadmoor in Rockwall County had been completed and 20 residents had tested positive, along with an initial six staff members. That number among staff members has continued to rise since.
The next day on April 29, Lamar County officials reported the county's first death, a person who had been a part of the outbreak at the Paris Healthcare Nursing Home.
Then, on May 1, Rockwall County officials said two more residents of the Broadmoor had died. They had been in their late 80s and 90s, officials said.
The county's entire death toll was now comprised of people connected to the nursing home.
On May 5, Lamar County officials made a similar announcement: two more people had died from the disease in Lamar County, and both were associated with the Paris Healthcare Nursing Home. The death toll in the county stood at three people, all associated with that particular nursing home.
The outbreak at the nursing home has made up the bulk of the county's 96 cases, with 54 reported cases so far linked to the outbreak there. And another 15 cases have now been reported at the Stillhouse Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center, a different long-term care facility in Paris.
On the same day, Rockwall County officials said at least 39 cases had been associated with the Broadmoor facility and announced a second round of testing was underway at the facility. Twenty cases had been found among residents and 19 among staff members, according to county officials.
And on May 6, Rockwall County officials said another person associated with that facility had died.
A similar update came out of Lamar County on May 8: a fourth person connected to the Paris Healthcare Nursing Home had died.
By May 9 in Rockwall County, a second round of testing had been completed among those connected to the Broadmoor. Twelve new cases had been found among residents and one new case in a staff member, officials said, bringing the facility's case count to the current total of 52 people.
Not all staff members live in the county, so not all of them will be included in the county's total of cases.
By May 10, another person connected to the Paris Healthcare Nursing Home had died, bringing the death toll to five. All of the deaths in the county so far have been linked to that facility.
And more cases have continued to be reported at long-term care facilities in the county, with 15 so far connected to Stillhouse Rehabilitation and Healthcare Center and three with Brentwood Terrace Healthcare & Rehabilitation Center, officials said the same day.
Both facilities had additional test results pending, and of the county's 96 total cases, 72 have been linked to one of the three facilities.
On the same day, Rockwall County officials also said a fifth person connected to the Broadmoor Medical Lodge had died.
At least four of the victims have been residents at the facility.
Other counties have seen similarly high case counts and death tolls associated with long-term care facilities. Dozens have died in Dallas County since the pandemic began, and more than 100 people connected to a living facility in Denton have contracted the virus.
The elderly are one of the most at-risk populations for the novel coronavirus, according to health experts.
While nursing home restrictions were enacted in March and visitations almost completely cut off, case numbers have still continued to rise at many of North Texas' facilities.
Experts say there is about a 23- to 24-day lag between when someone gets infected and when they're at risk of death due to COVID-19 complications.