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Tuesday update: State reports new COVID-19 cases, decline in hospitalizations

JACKSON — The Mississippi State Department of Health reported 1,452 new COVID-19 cases and 75 new deaths on Tuesday alongside a sharp decline in COVID-19 hospitalizations.

Forty-nine of the latest reported deaths occurred between Jan. 15 and Jan. 25. and 26 of these deaths occurred since Dec. 26 and were recently verified through death certificates, MSDH reports.

A long-term chart of Mississippi’s COVID-19 hospitalizations provided by MSDH also shows a recent sharp decline in hospitalizations cause by COVID-19 as well as a decline in ICU bed use for COVID-19 patients.

As of Jan. 24, 984 confirmed COVID-19 patients were in Mississippi hospitals compared to the last peak of 1,444 COVID-19 patients hospitalized.

“Critical shortages in hospital capacity remain, but the outlook is promising if Mississippians continue to follow COVID-19 control measures,” MSDH officials said.

A total of 2,162 cases and 71 deaths have been reported in Adams County since February 2020.

The state’s total now stands at 266,598 cases and 5,852 deaths since February 2020.

Thirty-six new long-term care facility cases and 11 long-term care facility deaths statewide were also reported by MSDH Tuesday.

Currently, there are 195 active outbreaks in the state’s long-term care facilities, according to MSDH.

Vaccinations

A limited amount of COVID-19 vaccines have been distributed to healthcare providers around the state, including hospitals, community health centers and local health clinics.

If you are eligible for vaccination, you can contact one of these providers for an appointment, especially if travel to a drive-through site is difficult, or if you have a history of allergic reaction that prevents you from being vaccinated at a drive-through site.

Continued high demand for first and second dose vaccinations means that available appointments may be limited, however, new vaccination appointment openings are being added several times a week.

If you are having trouble finding an available appointment, check regularly for new openings.

Remember that your second dose appointment can be made on or after 21 days for the Pfizer vaccine or 28 days for the Moderna vaccine from your first vaccination. The best time to look for a second dose appointment is about two weeks after your first dose.

Adults 65 and over and those ages 18-64 with certain chronic health conditions are now eligible for vaccination at drive-through sites in addition to healthcare personnel and those aged 75 and over.

More information about COVID-19 vaccines and appointment scheduling in Mississippi can be found online at msdh.ms.gov by clicking on the “vaccinations” tab.

What you can do

Be tested for COVID-19 if you have symptoms or believe you may have been exposed. See the state health department’s guide to local testing providers and free testing at http://HealthyMS.com/covid19test

Keep groups sizes small and avoid large gatherings, especially indoors. Many cases are now being spread through gatherings in homes without safety precautions.

Social distancing is still critical to stopping the spread of COVID-19. Keep plenty of distance between yourself and others.

Wearing a mask or face covering can sharply reduce the risk of passing COVID-19 on to others. Wearing a mask is strongly recommended whenever you are in public places with others around you.

Most people spreading COVID-19 do not know they are infected.

Remind others that precautions remain essential, and set an example by your actions.

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