Statewide COVID-19 case count drops dramatically

By FLOYD INGRAM / THE PRESS REGISTER,

 

The number of new COVID-19 cases in the state plummeted Monday with 357 cases reported today and only three new deaths.

But the virus is still out there and Coahoma County has reported 11 new cases over the past 11 days as the state and nation eye a possible spike in coronavirus cases and the community, state and nation try to move forward, get out from under lockdown and go back to work.

Coahoma County reported its sixth death on June 21 and 201 coronavirus cases have been reported locally since the county reported its first case of COVID-19 on March 18.

Many of those reported sick have now gotten well. The Center for Disease Control said the typical case of COVID-19 can last up to two weeks, with those suffering severe cases being ill up to three or four weeks.

Of the 31,257 cases that have been reported in the state since March 14, the Mississippi State Department of Health has reported 22,167 have gotten well. That means 70.9 percent of the people who have gotten sick have recovered.

Coahoma County has a population of 22,628 and an infection rate of 0.88-percent.

Again, while the fatality rate appears to be dropping, the disease continues to be a threat for nursing homes, the elderly and those with compromised immune systems.

As of today, there have been 2,759 cases of COVID-19 in nursing home with 542 deaths reported. That represents 8.8-percent of the state’s total cases and 48.6-percent of the state’s total deaths to the disease.

With massive testing ongoing across the state, Mississippi reported 870 new cases on Friday and has routinely reported above 500 cases since early June.

The Coahoma County Board of Supervisors considered making all county employees wear masks and require masks be worn by anyone entering a county building.

“Our situation is a little different in that we can’t require people in the country to wear masks and it probably wouldn’t do any good,” Board President Johnny Newson said Monday. “I want to look at some more numbers before we do anything.”

Dist. 3 Supervisor Derrell Washington said he wanted to know accurate and up-to-date percentages and now how many people had gotten sick since March.

“We’ve been talking about educating people since March and I go to Wal-Mart and still see people without masks,” said Washington. “How are you going to get people to wear a mask unless you say, “Please wear and mask and you can go to jail if you don’t.”

The wearing of masks has become a politically charged issue with Republican President Donald Trump hesitant to don a mask and Democratic candidate Joe Biden sheltering in place and wearing a mask when he goes out in public.

There is no firm data saying a mask prevents a person from getting the disease.

As communities have opened up people simply don a mask and head out to shop, go to church or attend public events.

The Numbers

With a population of 2.987 million, the MSDH says 1.04-percent of Mississippians have now contracted COVID-19.

The number of new cases being reported locally also indicates many – especially young people -- may have the disease and just don’t know it.

Demographics from across the state and country also show the disease is more prevalent and under reported – for a variety of reasons – in minority communities.

As of Friday, 52-percent of the fatalities have been African American, 41.2-percent have been white and 6.8-percent have been others. The total cases by race have been 58-percent African American, 31.5-percent white and 10.5-percent other races.

Health officials have warned of spikes in the case count as the state reopens businesses, restaurants, movie theaters and gym.

Gov. Tate Reeves has said he will clamp back down on the economy if he sees a resurgence of the disease. Reeves.

The statistics continue to confirm data that mid-sized communities with lower populations but adequate healthcare are handling their fight against COVID-19 better than others. It should be pointed out all cities and towns have unique factors affecting their numbers.

Gov. Tate Reeves has said not all areas of the state have reported high numbers and local officials should be willing to make their own decisions.

Across the nation 2,886,267 people or .87-percent of the nation’s 328.2 million people have contracted the disease and 129,811, or .49-percent, have died

County by County

The Mississippi State Department of Health and the University of Mississippi Medical Center have brought in mobile coronavirus testing unit to Coahoma County on three separate occasions and the Aaron E. Henry Center has also conducted testing, including its most recent in Bobo on Thursday.

The results of those tests are prompting the community’s infection rate to climb.

Cases reported as of today in the following Mississippi counties were: Adams (313), Alcorn (71), Amite (91), Attala (361) Benton (38), Bolivar (340), Calhoun (132), Carroll (166), Chickasaw (279), Choctaw (74), Claiborne (279), Clarke (207), Clay (251), Coahoma (201), Copiah (607), Covington (359), Desoto (1,620), Forrest (878), Franklin (45), George (89), Greene (105), Grenada (490), Hancock (130), Harrison (933), Hinds (2,536), Holmes (557), Humphreys (150), Issaquena (9), Itawamba (136), Jackson (638), Jasper (263), Jefferson (108), Jeff Davis (112), Jones (1,128), Kemper (179),  Lafayette (393), Lamar (465), Lauderdale (910), Lawrence (178), Leake (578), Lee (552), Leflore (491), Lincoln (466), Lowndes (494), Madison (1,314), Marion (284), Marshall (234), Monroe (403), Montgomery (135), Neshoba (992),  Newton (339), Noxubee (267), Oktibbeha (541), Panola (352), Pearl River (257), Perry (67), Pike (441), Pontotoc (292), Prentiss (108), Quitman (78), Rankin (951), Scott (773), Sharkey (38), Simpson (323), Smith (218), Stone (65), Sunflower (400), Tallahatchie (137), Tate (288), Tippah (131), Tishomingo (83), Tunica (105), Union (210), Walthall (204), Warren (516), Washington (591), Wayne (545), Webster (127), Wilkinson (94), Winston (266), Yalobusha (173) and Yazoo (518).

County case numbers change as investigations find new information on a case's home county.

The state announced its first death due to coronavirus March 20. Fatalities attributed to the disease have been reported in Adams (18), Alcorn (2), Amite (2), Attala (23), Bolivar (14), Calhoun (4), Carroll (11), Chickasaw (18), Choctaw (4), Claiborne (10), Clarke (24), Clay (11), Coahoma (6), Copiah (15), Covington (5), Desoto (16), Forrest (42), Franklin (2), George (3), Greene (8), Grenada (5), Hancock (13), Harrison (11), Hinds (40), Holmes (41), Humphreys (9), Issaquena (1), Itawamba (8), Jackson (16), Jasper (6), Jefferson (3), Jeff Davis (4), Jones (49), Kemper (14), Lafayette (4), Lamar (7),  Lauderdale (79), Lawrence (2), Leake (19), Lee (19), Leflore (51), Lincoln (34), Lowndes (13), Madison (34), Marion (11), Marshall (3), Monroe (30), Montgomery (2), Neshoba (71), Newton (9), Noxubee (8), Oktibbeha (26), Panola (6), Pearl River (32), Perry (4), Pike (12), Pontotoc (6), Prentiss (3), Rankin (12), Scott (15), Simpson (3), Smith (11), Stone (1), Sunflower (8), Tallahatchie (4), Tate (10), Tippah (11), Tishomingo (1), Tunica (3), Union (9), Walthall (5), Warren (18), Washington (9), Wayne (13), Webster (10), Wilkinson (9), Winston (6), Yalobusha (7) and Yazoo (6) counties as of today.

The virus appears to be affecting the state's higher population areas such as the Gulf Coast, Jackson, Meridian metropolitan areas, Desoto County and Lee County more intensely. Communities that have had people travel to or from larger U.S. cities also appear to have a higher incident of the disease.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Your Clarksdale Press Register will keep readers posted as we learn more information and as news changes. All stories about coronavirus are being offered free to the community and will not be put behind the Clarksdale Press Register paywall.

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