Case counts and death rates are finally coming down to pre-March levels in original U.S. COVID-19 hotspots like New York and New Jersey. However, new data points to rural cities and towns as prime spots for future outbreaks and deaths from the disease.
Data compiled by The New York Times shows cities and towns in Georgia, Texas, Arkansas and other Midwestern and Southern states as having the highest growth rate in new cases and new deaths related to COVID-19. The metro area of LaGrange, Georgia, is seeing one of the larger spikes in the country, with a recent daily case increase of 10 percent for the area. Cases in smaller metro areas of Texas are also seeing spikes. For death rates, metro areas and towns like LaGrange, Georgia, and Yuma, Arizona, are both seeing an increase of 17 percent and 13 percent each day, respectively.
While the U.S. may see cases and deaths from COVID-19 dropping nationally, many of those are coming from a select few early hotspots like New York and New Jersey. As these states finally begin seeing results of months of social distancing, the national daily case rate is unsurprisingly dropping. Still, as data from The New York Times points out, rural cities and towns across the country may be new targets for the virus – especially as people grow anxious of social distancing restrictions and reopening measures begin.