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Adams County now has confirmed COVID-19 case; Mayor still awaiting test results

NATCHEZ — The first positive test for COVID-19 in an Adams County patient was confirmed by the Mississippi State Department of Health Friday.

MSDH reported 30 new cases in the state, including one each in Adams County and Franklin County.

On Friday, 80 total cases of the new coronavirus were reported Friday, including one death of a Hancock County man, who died in a Louisiana hospital.

Details of the cases in Adams County and Franklin County were not available from the MSDH officials Friday.

Tammy Yates, a communications specialist with MSDH, said the department is working toward providing more detailed information on its website about each case in the state but has not been able to do so at this time.

On Friday afternoon, Natchez Mayor Darryl Grennell said he is still waiting for the results from a COVID-19 test his doctor submitted to a private lab Monday.

Grennell said he had expected the results back Thursday.

“The nurse practitioner texted me (Friday) and said as soon as she got the results, I would be the first to know,” Grennell said. “I feel a whole lot better, but I am committed to staying self-quarantined until I know what the results are.”

Grennell asked all citizens to remain calm and continue to practice social distancing to the greatest extent possible.

“The safest approach is to stay home,” Grennell said. “The tool that we have to fight this pandemic is social distancing. If you have any questions, doubts, or concerns about whether or not a social activity is safe, then err on the side of caution and avoid it.”

Grennell said he urges all residents to abide by all guidelines now being issued by the joint Natchez-Adams County Emergency Operations Center

“I pray for our community,” Grennell said. “I hope that people cooperate because that is what is going to be the key.”

On Friday afternoon, Merit Health Natchez officials said the hospital has no confirmed cases at its facility.

“We have and will continue to screen and test patients as deemed medically necessary,” the hospital said in a news release.

Effective Friday, the hospital has suspended visitation, with the following exceptions:

4End-of-life, as determined by the care team

4Pediatric patients may have two visitors and both must be parents, guardians or caregivers

4Obstetrics patients may have one visitor

The hospital’s emergency department will also adhere to the following restrictions and precautions:

4Patients will be triaged by a medical professional before the patient is removed from their vehicle.

4Once triaged, no visitors will be allowed inside the emergency department. Exceptions will be made for minor patients and end-of-life circumstances.

Hospital officials say they are taking proactive steps to prepare for the protection of patients, caregivers and the community and that they are monitoring ongoing COVID-19 updates from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“Our hospital is preparing to respond to the potential surge in patients, and we are reviewing our inventory and protocols regularly as CDC guidance is revised,” the hospital said in its news release.