2 Mississippi universities find COVID-19 as students return

Coronavirus outbreaks have been found at two of Mississippi's eight public universities within days of students returning to campuses.

Posted: Aug 20, 2020 9:43 AM

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Outbreaks of the new coronavirus have been found at two of Mississippi's eight public universities within the first days of students returning to campuses, the state health officer said Wednesday.

Dr. Thomas Dobbs said cases at the University of Mississippi in Oxford and Mississippi University for Women in Columbus appear to have originated off-campus.

The University of Mississippi said in a memo Wednesday that 13 student-athletes and one employee had tested positive for COVID-19. The memo said 11 of the athletes are on the same team, but it did not name the sport.

“These individuals were tested earlier this week as part of a mass screening for student-athletes returning to campus and were instructed to quarantine until test results were received,” the memo said.

MUW said on its website Wednesday that seven students had reported testing positive for the virus since Friday, and each had been on campus within a week before the diagnosis.

Dobbs said some of the MUW cases can be traced to the Cotton District in Starkville, an area with restaurants and bars that are popular with students from MUW and Mississippi State University.

“Not a big surprise,” Dobbs said. “We know when people socialize and get in groups concentrated not wearing masks, they're absolutely going to spread the coronavirus.”

The University of Mississippi said in a news release Wednesday that it has a team of people tracing cases to try to slow the spread of the virus. Students, faculty or staff members who have COVID-19 symptoms or think they might have been near someone with the virus are asked to contact the university health services office for testing and to isolate themselves until they receive results. In addition, the university is using an app to notify people who have been in contact with those who test positive, so those people can also get tested and go into isolation.

The Health Department said Wednesday that Mississippi, with a population of about 3 million, has had at least 74,555 reported cases and at least 2,163 deaths from COVID-19 as of Tuesday evening. That’s an increase of 1,348 confirmed cases and 36 deaths from numbers reported the day before, with 12 deaths occurring between July 22 and Aug. 14 and identified later from death certificates.

The true number of virus infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested and studies suggest people can be infected without feeling sick. The virus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most but can be more severe or fatal for some, especially older adults and those with existing health problems.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 319381

Reported Deaths: 7354
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto22264265
Hinds20634421
Harrison18381316
Rankin13862282
Jackson13677248
Madison10234224
Lee10050176
Jones8458167
Forrest7821153
Lauderdale7257242
Lowndes6498149
Lamar633688
Lafayette6298120
Washington5418136
Bolivar4835133
Panola4663110
Oktibbeha466098
Pearl River4597146
Marshall4572105
Warren4440121
Pontotoc424973
Monroe4155135
Union415576
Neshoba4059179
Lincoln4007111
Hancock386087
Leflore3515125
Tate342386
Sunflower339391
Pike3366110
Alcorn324172
Scott319374
Yazoo314171
Itawamba305077
Adams304885
Copiah299766
Coahoma298383
Simpson298189
Tippah291568
Prentiss283561
Leake271774
Marion271280
Covington267083
Wayne264442
Grenada264087
George251951
Newton248563
Tishomingo231267
Winston229981
Jasper222148
Attala215073
Chickasaw210459
Holmes190374
Clay187554
Stone187433
Tallahatchie180041
Clarke178980
Calhoun174032
Yalobusha167840
Smith164034
Walthall135247
Greene131833
Lawrence131024
Montgomery128643
Noxubee127934
Perry126638
Amite126142
Carroll122330
Webster115032
Tunica108027
Jefferson Davis107833
Claiborne103030
Benton102325
Humphreys97533
Kemper96628
Franklin85023
Quitman81816
Choctaw79018
Wilkinson69332
Jefferson66228
Sharkey50917
Issaquena1696
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 547873

Reported Deaths: 11274
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson809141565
Mobile41984826
Madison35629523
Tuscaloosa26147458
Shelby25580254
Montgomery25075611
Baldwin21805313
Lee16248175
Calhoun14710325
Morgan14618285
Etowah14160362
Marshall12446230
Houston10757288
Elmore10292212
Limestone10179157
St. Clair10155250
Cullman9928200
Lauderdale9591248
DeKalb8963189
Talladega8455184
Walker7330280
Autauga7229113
Blount6937139
Jackson6905113
Colbert6406139
Coffee5622126
Dale4929114
Russell454541
Chilton4470116
Franklin430783
Covington4267122
Tallapoosa4127154
Escambia401180
Chambers3723123
Dallas3606156
Clarke352861
Marion3237106
Pike313978
Lawrence3124100
Winston283272
Bibb267664
Geneva257081
Marengo250665
Pickens236662
Barbour234559
Hale226678
Butler223771
Fayette217762
Henry193743
Cherokee187245
Randolph186944
Monroe179141
Washington170439
Macon162951
Clay160159
Crenshaw155157
Cleburne153144
Lamar146237
Lowndes142053
Wilcox127030
Bullock124242
Conecuh113230
Coosa111429
Perry108726
Sumter105732
Greene93434
Choctaw61725
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