New COVID-19 cases in state top 400 in latest report

By CLAY MCFERRIN,

The MSDH on Friday, May 22, reported 402 new cases of COVID-19 in Mississippi and 16 new deaths.

The number of confirmed cases in Tallahatchie County was unchanged at 23, with one death.

A total of 432 Mississippians were hospitalized for treatment due to COVID-19.

The daily count is updated with test results and other information reported to MSDH by 6 p.m. the previous day.  The Health Department said tests may have been made during the past several days, and represent individuals who became ill a week ago or more. COVID-19 deaths are reported to the state agency by hospitals, medical examiners and coroners, MSDH noted.

The new statistics bring the total number of COVID-19 cases in the state since March 11 to 12,624, with 596 deaths.

The Health Department said 37 of the new cases reported today were among residents in long-term care (LTC) facilities, and that there now are 102 active outbreaks of COVID-19 in those facilities. An outbreak means there is at least one case among residents or staff.  Tallahatchie County has no outbreaks in LTC facilities.

MSDH presumes that 7,681 persons infected with the virus in Mississippi have recovered, as of a May 18 report.  (MSDH updates this number weekly.)  This figure includes people never hospitalized who have not tested positive for COVID-19 in 14 days or more.  It also includes cases in which there was a known hospitalization, or hospitalization was unknown, and it has been 21 days or more since the case tested positive.

The latest reported COVID-19 case totals for area counties are as follow, with the previous day’s totals in parenthesis and the number of COVID-19 related deaths in bold:

» Coahoma: 92  (86)   3

» Grenada: 68  (66)   2

» Lafayette: 116   (110)   3

» Leflore: 211   (206)   25

» Panola: 59   (58)   2

» Quitman: 23   (21)

» Sunflower: 73   (71)   3

» Tallahatchie: 23   (23)   1

» Yalobusha: 79   (76)   4

Tallahatchie County’s positive cases were reported to the public March 23 (1), March 24 (1), April 5 (1), April 13 (1), April 15 (2), April 16 (1), April 17 (1), April 22 (1), April 24 (2), May 2 (1), May 12 (1), May 13 (1), May 14 (1), May 15 (3), May 17 (1), May 18 (2) and May 21 (2). The death was reported April 17.

MSDH continues to advise all Mississippi residents to cover their face (mouth and nose) with a non-medical grade mask or cloth when leaving the home to perform essential functions such as grocery shopping, filling prescriptions and in other public places where proper social distancing of 6 feet between persons is difficult to maintain.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control (CDC), a significant portion of individuals with the coronavirus lack symptoms (asymptomatic) and can transmit the virus to others before showing symptoms just by speaking, coughing or sneezing.

A face mask need not be of the retail variety.  A T-shirt, small towel or scarf folded and fastened with two rubber bands will work, according to the CDC.

Cloth face coverings should:

• fit snugly against the side of the face

• be secured with ties or ear loops

• include multiple layers of fabric

• allow for breathing with no restriction

• be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

The CDC offers additional tips on making, wearing and cleaning a cloth face mask covering at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth....

For the latest guidance and case updates for Mississippi, download the free MS Ready mobile app.

Additional information, including complete county-by-county case statistics, preventive recommendations and more, is available at the MSDH website at www.healthyms.com/covid-19.

MSDH maintains the Mississippi Coronavirus Hotline, which offers answers to questions about COVID-19. Call anytime: 877-978-6453.