Where COVID-19 cases are rising and falling in the Chattanooga region

Staff photo by Troy Stolt / Members of the Tennessee National Guard Medical Staff stand outside the East Lake Courts Community Center, where free COVID-19 testing was being offered to residents of East Lake Courts on Thursday, May 21, 2020 in Chattanooga, Tenn.

Counties surrounding Hamilton County continue to be hit by COVID-19 at a higher rate, even as Chattanooga's cases continue to surge.

Calculating the number of new cases per 10,000 people in each county takes into account different population sizes and allows for comparisons between rural and urban areas.

Here is what the coronavirus data is showing in the past week.

Where cases are rising

In the past week, Whitfield County, Georgia, averaged 5.94 new COVID-19 cases a day per 10,000 residents, followed by Marshall County, Alabama, with 4.92 new cases a day per 10,000 people.

While the new case average in Whitfield County is the highest in the region, cases there are down slightly from last week. The county announced six new COVID-19 deaths in the past week.

Cases in Meigs County increased dramatically in the past week. The rural county of around 12,000 people is now averaging 2.44 new cases a day per 10,000 people, up from from 0.7 last week.

Hamilton County, Tennessee, is averaging 2.88 new cases a day per 10,000 people, up slightly from last week. The county has announced record numbers of hospitalizations in the past week, and the Hamilton County Health Department has recorded two additional deaths from the virus for a total of 41.

The health department announced 78 new cases Wednesday, bringing the county total to 4,539. There are now 1,611 active cases in the county, with 86 people hospitalized and 55 people under investigation.

(READ MORE: Tennessee, Georgia and Alabama guidelines, mandates to know during the COVID-19 pandemic)

Where cases are falling

Several counties in Northeast Alabama saw significant drops in cases in the past week, including DeKalb, Jackson and Madison.

Last week, DeKalb had the highest number of new cases per 10,000 people with 7.12. The county reported 216 new infections in the past week, lowering the county's per capita average of new cases to 4.33.

Jackson and Madison counties saw similar drops - Jackson from 4.61 to 2.36 and Madison from 5.12 to 3.36 new cases each day per 10,000 people.

Contact Wyatt Massey at wmassey@timesfreepress.com or 423-757-6249. Follow him on Twitter @news4mass.