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As Walker County works to catch up to other counties in coronavirus testing, a drive-thru option is opening up on Monday.

The tests will be held at Walker County Fairgrounds in Huntsville for one day only. Although it is drive-thru, you do still have to make an appointment.

You will be screened if you have symptoms such as fever, cough, fatigue, body aches/ muscle or joint pain, shortness of breath, sore throat, headaches, nausea/ vomiting/ diarrhea, nasal congestion or loss of taste and/or smell.

To register visit www.TXCOVIDTEST.org or call 512-883-2400.

This will be going on from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Monday.

Cases have skyrocketed in Huntsville and Walker County over the past few weeks, due in large part to the Texas Department of Criminal Justice system. In their Friday afternoon update, agency data showed that 109 offenders and 56 unit employees from Walker County’s seven local prisons have tested positive for COVID-19.

Not all unit employees live within Walker County, but officials with the Walker County Office of Emergency Management have confirmed that a bulk of the employee cases account for the 65 active public cases.

In total, Walker County has 174 confirmed cases of COVID-19 with three total fatalities.

TDCJ UPDATE

A second inmate housed in the Wynne Unit has died from COVID-19 related symptoms.

Officials with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice, announced Friday that 79-year-old Thomas Rodriguez was pronounced dead at Hospital Galveston on Thursday where he was being treated for COVID-19.

He had been assigned to the Wynne Unit, but was taken to Huntsville Memorial Hospital after suffering from shortness of breath on April 19. Later that day, he was transported to Hospital Galveston where he tested positive for COVID-19.

Agency officials say that Rodriguez suffered from a number of pre-existing health conditions.

He was serving a life sentence for aggravated kidnapping out of Harris County. His family declined to have an autopsy performed, however COVID-19 is believed to have contributed to his death.

There are currently 62 inmate positives and 38 employee positives within the Wynne Unit.

There are an additional seven deaths that are under investigation from TDCJ officials. Two other deaths that had been under investigation have been determined to be non-COVID-19 related after the return of preliminary autopsy reports.

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