COVID-19: Week of September 14 – 21, 2020
- Mississippi’s 3538 new COVID-19cases was a 3.9% increase from last week’s 2639. This a jump of about 1%. There were 104 deaths, down from 121 last week. Totals as of 9-21 reporting were 93,556 cases and 2810 deaths since reporting began on March 11, 2020. Mississippi’s jump of 1% in cases breaks a previous 3 week decline.
- Mississippi’s rate of 944* deaths per million of population was a 3.8% increase, compared to last week’s 4.6% – so, some good news. However, Mississippi remains the 7th most lethal state behind LA, NY, NJ, MA, CT, and RI.
- Mississippi’s rate of 31,435* total COVID-19 cases per million keeps it in the nation’s 3rd highest position for infections, behind only Florida and Louisiana.
- Statewide Hospitalized Patients: (as of 9-20-20)
- There were an average of 512 543 COVID-19 patients requiring hospitalization, compared to 543 last week.
- The daily average of COVID-19 patients requiring ICU dropped for a 6th week, From 184 to 170, a substantial drop.
- Patients requiring ventilators dropped for the 6th week to an average 88 daily, down from last week’s 106.
- STATEWIDE Long Term Care (LTC) facilities:
- As of 9-21, 127 LTC facilities statewide reporting active coronavirus outbreaks.
- Total LTC New cases rose by 171, compared to 283 last week. LTC facilities accounted for 4.8% (down from 10.7%) of all new cases (171 of 3538 cases). This gives the state its second week of decline in LTC after a spike 3 weeks ago.
- The percentage of new statewide deaths attributable to LTC was sharply down again this week, at 36.5% (38 of 104) compared to last week’s 43.8%. This makes two weeks of decline in the percent of deaths attributable to LTC.
NORTHEAST MISSISSIPPI (NEMS):
- As of September 20th, Northeast Mississippi had 777 new COVID-19 cases, for a total of 14,810 cases, an increase of 5.5%. This is essentially the same as last week’s 5.4%. So, a “holding” week after 6 previous weeks of decline.
- This is the 7th week of downward percentages, but Northeast Mississippi is still having a higher percentage of new cases then statewide, which rose only 3.9%.
- NEMS’s total deaths reached 382, having increased by 13 this week. There were 2 deaths in Long term care and 11 in the general population This is the second week in a row where general population deaths surpassed those in LTC. The 13 new deaths represents a 3.5% increase from last week. This is the first week of decline after two weeks of “holding” at about 6.6%.
- NEMS Long Term Care (LTC) facilities:
- On Sept 20th, 14 NEMS counties had active outbreaks in residents in 30 LTC facilities. Last week there were 33 outbreaks in 14 counties. This figure fluctuates a great deal.
- Northeast MS’s 2 new deaths in LTC facilities compares to 20 last week. Total deaths in all NEMS facilities are now 191.
- For the first time in several weeks, the NEMS death rate DID NOT exceed the state’s rate.
- Eleven of 15 counties surpassed the state’s 3.9% average increase rate of NEW cases. As a result, the NEMS average of 5.5% is substantially higher than the statewide average.
- Itawama Co. had over 11% increase.
- Prentiss Co. had an almost 10% increase.
- Benton and Lafayette were just below 7%.
- Alcorn and Pontotoc were just below 6%
- Clay county was 6.2%
- Chickasaw, Lee, Tippah and Tishomingo counties were all over 5%.
- Only Calhoun, Marshall, Monroe and Union were below the state average.
- This week, LTC facilities in northeast MS accounted for 3.1% of new cases (down from 8.1%) and 15.4% of new deaths (down from 87%) in the region.
- Benton County has no current active outbreaks
- Benton and Tippah counties still have had no LTC facility residents’ deaths attributed to COVID-19.
The Take-Away For This Week
Mississippi is continuing its downward hospitalization trends. Hospitalized patients are down for the 8th week; ICU admissions and ventilator usage for Covid are both down for the 6th week.
Northeast Mississippi (NEMS) statistics are improving. NEMS deaths were below the state’s average increase for the first time in many weeks. Cases in NEMS continue to outpace statewide averages, but the differences are narrowing.
Long Term Care facilities’ stats show decreasing percentages of the statewide statistics.
Dr. Thomas Dobbs, the MS State Health Officer urges Mississippians to continue to be careful. He says the state is “doing a good job right now,” and urges continued use of masks, social distancing, small groups and handwashing.
No vaccine is expected for at least several months.
The rate of increase is definitely slowing statewide, though there are pockets of problems which are being addressed.
Last week, Gov. Tate Reeves’ executive extended a statewide mask mandate through the end of September. Restrictions continue to be loosened on restaurants, retail establishments and for sporting events. Some nursing homes are allowing visitation under very specific conditions. Check with the facility before going there.
Winter is approaching. It is time to get your influenza vaccine.
Vulnerable people in northeast Mississippi should continue extra precautions, as increased cases and deaths are largely due to issues of behavior. Check your county statistics and know how they stand. Daily reports are available by county from the MSDH.
As always, if you are vulnerable, continue to take care of yourself in any way you see fit. If you are able, give assistance to someone who needs it.
*statistics from WorldOMeter as of day of posting
21SEP2020 Weekly COVID-19 summary stats: 21SEP2020 Covid-19 stats
School reports by county: https://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/_static/resources/10574.pdf