Increase in COVID cases linked back to mask mandate being lifted, local doctor says

A local doctor believes the state's recent increase in coronavirus cases can be traced back to the governor lifting the statewide mask mandate.

Posted: Oct 15, 2020 8:18 PM

TUPELO, Miss. (WTVA) - In Thursday’s report, the Mississippi State Department of Health reported 1,322 new cases of the coronavirus.

MSDH updates its case totals each morning based on test results from the previous day.

Dr. Jeremy Blanchard, the chief medical officer of North Mississippi Medical Center, said the higher numbers can be traced back to Gov. Tate Reeves’ decision to lift the statewide mask mandate on Sept. 30.

"The big thing is people actually listened to it and they quit doing their masking and quit taking it seriously," he said.

Even though the statewide mask mandate expired, the public is to still wear masks in schools and inside close-contact businesses like salons and barbershop.

Other state medical professionals agree, including Dr. LouAnn Woodward of the University of Mississippi Medical Center in Jackson

She's urging Mississippians to mask up.

"We do not have an effective treatment. We do not have an effective vaccination, but we know masking works,” she said. “Masking, social distancing and hand hygiene are the only three things that work."

Blanchard said he is already seeing an abrupt increase in hospital admissions.

If Mississippians do not return to wearing masks, the situation will only get worse, he said.

"If we want to avoid being in a really catastrophic situation, I believe, we have got to have the governor mandate masking, and we have got to adhere to it."

Blanchard said if Mississippians want to live up to the state’s nickname of the "Hospitality State," then they must wear masks.

"So, if we really care about each other; if we're really the Hospitality State, then out of respect for everybody who you care about, who you are as a human being and a Mississippian, mask. Please mask appropriately."

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 315026

Reported Deaths: 7257
CountyCasesDeaths
DeSoto21684260
Hinds20385416
Harrison17973309
Rankin13650278
Jackson13456246
Madison10130217
Lee9988174
Jones8388163
Forrest7701152
Lauderdale7198240
Lowndes6411148
Lamar624686
Lafayette6210119
Washington5342134
Bolivar4804132
Oktibbeha463298
Panola4601107
Pearl River4524146
Marshall4454103
Warren4397121
Pontotoc421172
Monroe4120133
Union411276
Neshoba4033176
Lincoln3972110
Hancock380287
Leflore3500125
Sunflower336490
Tate335484
Pike3330105
Scott316773
Alcorn313670
Yazoo311870
Itawamba300877
Copiah297865
Coahoma295979
Simpson295388
Tippah289068
Adams288682
Prentiss280360
Marion269680
Leake268673
Wayne262941
Grenada261987
Covington260381
George249448
Newton246963
Winston227881
Tishomingo227567
Jasper221148
Attala214473
Chickasaw208457
Holmes189174
Clay185654
Stone183033
Tallahatchie179041
Clarke178180
Calhoun170932
Yalobusha164838
Smith162734
Walthall134345
Greene130633
Lawrence129324
Montgomery127242
Noxubee126734
Perry126338
Amite123142
Carroll121929
Webster114532
Jefferson Davis107233
Tunica105726
Claiborne102530
Benton100125
Humphreys96733
Kemper95828
Franklin83923
Quitman81116
Choctaw76418
Wilkinson67631
Jefferson65728
Sharkey50217
Issaquena1686
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 540267

Reported Deaths: 11038
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson798791529
Mobile41295809
Madison35175506
Tuscaloosa25932455
Shelby25309249
Montgomery24736593
Baldwin21422310
Lee15997172
Calhoun14577319
Morgan14431280
Etowah13927353
Marshall12280225
Houston10650282
Elmore10158206
Limestone10075151
St. Clair9955245
Cullman9773194
Lauderdale9465243
DeKalb8866188
Talladega8344176
Walker7261278
Autauga7010108
Jackson6840112
Blount6776139
Colbert6322135
Coffee5583118
Dale4878113
Russell445938
Chilton4383113
Franklin426382
Covington4138118
Tallapoosa4044153
Escambia395177
Chambers3598123
Dallas3569153
Clarke351561
Marion3140101
Pike312077
Lawrence303698
Winston275873
Bibb264864
Geneva254178
Marengo249865
Pickens234862
Barbour232056
Hale224078
Butler219069
Fayette213162
Henry190043
Cherokee184845
Randolph182542
Monroe178241
Washington167839
Macon161350
Clay157257
Crenshaw153657
Cleburne149641
Lamar143336
Lowndes140753
Wilcox127430
Bullock123342
Conecuh110829
Coosa109228
Perry107826
Sumter105032
Greene92634
Choctaw61024
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