TYLER, Texas (KETK) – Gov. Greg Abbott announced that more plans to reopen Texas will be coming on Monday. This comes exactly two months after he declared a public health disaster in Texas to combat the COVID-19 pandemic.

Since the coronavirus entered the U.S., there has been a spike of cases inside prisons, meatpacking plants, and nursing homes.

“Those are the 3 areas where about 50% or more of the deaths arise from,” said Gov. Abbott. “As far as hospitalization is concerned as far as death is concerned things are looking very good in East Texas as well as the entire state of Texas.”

Lawmakers believe reopening the state is the right call describing the COVID-19 pandemic as manageable if everyone follows protocols from the CDC.

“If Texans follow the health guidelines of washing their hands, social distancing, wearing a face-covering when they go out in public, then we can be successful in reopening our economy, getting Texans back to work,” said Dennis Bonnen, Speaker of the Texas House of Representatives.

The first COVID-19 case in East Texas was confirmed on March 10. Over two months later and there are now over 1,700 cases in East Texas. Health officials say despite the increase, it’s important to get back to normal.

“We have to start moving forward in our society to start reopening things, but the thing for everybody has to remember is we have to learn how to live with this virus,” said George Roberts, CEO of NET Health.

Officials encourage the public to continue taking safety precautions when out in public and get tested if they are exhibiting symptoms. While people have coined the term ‘a new normal,’ Gov. Abbott says things won’t fully be the same until the vaccine which could take up to 18 months to create.