KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) – After two weekends of widespread no-appointment and free testing, the state says 154,402 Tennesseans have been tested for COVID-19. The number of cases and deaths are on the rise, too.

Cases rose 2.6% — or by 251 from Sunday — to 9,981, the Tennessee Department of Health said Monday. Deaths rose by 1.7% — or 3 people — to 184.

The state plans another big testing push this weekend after testing over 7,000 this past weekend.

Some 837 people have been hospitalized to coronavirus and 4,720 have recovered.

Reopening for business

Tennessee has begun reopening its economy even as cases and deaths grow.

Most of Tennessee’s restaurants were given the green light to allow dine-in service again Monday as part of Gov. Bill Lee’s directive to begin reopening the economy. The state’s largest metro areas, however, are coming up with their own plans.

Knoxville and Knox County announced on Monday a more gradual reopening beginning Friday.

COVID-19 tips and warnings

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded the list of symptoms for COVID-19.

Although often recommended by President Donald Trump, the Food and Drug Administration is warning doctors against prescribing a malaria drug for treating the coronavirus outside of hospitals or research settings.

In an alert Friday, regulators flagged reports of serious side effects and death among patients taking hydroxychloroquine and the related drug chloroquine. The drugs, also prescribed for lupus, can cause a number of side effects, including heart rhythm problems, severely low blood pressure and muscle or nerve damage.

A Town Hall

WATE-TV and are part of a statewide televised, 30-minute town hall on Thursday at 7:30 p.m. featuring Lee and Health Commissioner Dr. Lisa Piercey.