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In the past 24 hours, the current positive Covid-19 cases in Lamar County have increased to 50, with seven travel related and 43 community spread, the Paris-Lamar County Health District said Sunday.

After setting up drive-thru testing site on Saturday, Paris-Lamar County Health District has received results that 41 of the positive cases are associated with Paris Healthcare Nursing Home, representing a combination of both staff and residents.

"All positive patients have been notified and quarantined immediately. It is imperative at this time that everyone maintain social distancing and we strongly recommend wearing masks in public places," district director Gina Prestridge said.

A breakdown of cases includes:

  • 20-29- 2 females
  • 30-39- 2 males 1 females
  • 40-49- 4 females
  • 50-59 3 males 4 females
  • 60-69 10 males 9 females
  • 70-79 2 males 5 females
  • 80 plus 4 males 4 females

In addition, there are approximately 40 persons under monitoring, Prestridge said.

As for antibody testing this coming week, Paris Mayor Steve Clifford said it's cancelled.

“The health department people said we could not possibly show up,” Clifford said officials said during a conference call.

"All our medical facilities and all our logistical capabilities focused on containing this outbreak, and therefore I took the lead and said we just need to cancel the Covid-19 testing."

Clifford said Paris residents have been complacent because there hasn’t been a large number of people with the virus, but the nursing home outbreak is "a huge dose of reality."

"This an extremely dangerous and highly contagious virus. If you let you let your guard down for just a minute, you are going to have an outbreak," he said.

"We are reinforcing how critically important it is to wear a mask, particularly inside in confined spaces. If you are in a public building, everyone should be wearing a mask.

"I was on a conference call today about the outbreak and discussions were can we figure where these people that are infected might have been. We are talking large numbers have been infected. They have been all over town in most every store."

Clifford added the majority of people found to be positive were found to be asymptomatic.

Klark Byrd is the managing editor of The Paris News. He can be reached at 903-785-6960 or

Managing Editor

Klark Byrd is the managing editor of The Paris News and the editor of Paris Life Magazine. He resides in Paris with his wife, Krystle, and their three children, Charlie, Annalise and Willow.

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(2) comments


People are not taking this serious no matter what the mayor thinks. There is always about 50 people standing in the street on 2 ND ne and pine bluff drinking and the cops go right by them everyday. There is a Barber shop open on 1st and pine bluff and a tattoo shop on pine bluff is open but all the signs say closed but they are open a gym on the loop by wal Mart is open to. Then all of these people are going into stores and making other people sick because they don't care and neither do the cops


Why can't the nursing home be named. They name them in Dallas and all around the country. The answer about being patient privacy does not wash.

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