Mississippi med center conducting clinic trials on virus

The University of Mississippi Medical Center is about to begin clinical trials to find a coronavirus treatment.

Posted: Apr 15, 2020 4:00 PM

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — University of Mississippi Medical Center leaders said Wednesday that physicians and researchers there will conduct several clinical trials on potential treatment options for people infected with the new coronavirus.

“This is important for the country, it’s important for our state and mostly it’s important for the patients to have that understanding of what actually would be valid and important and helpful treatment modalities,” said Dr. LouAnn Woodward, a physician who is the medical center's top executive.

The clinical trials at UMMC are in partnership with other institutions and with the Food and Drug Administration and the National Institutes for Health. The medical center will be one of 44 sites to test hydroxychloroquine, a drug that modulates the immune system and has long been used to treat malaria, rheumatoid arthritis and lupus.

“The goal is to determine if it prevents death and respiratory failure from patients who have COVID-19 if it is instituted early in their course,” said Dr. Richard Summers, associate vice chancellor for research at UMMC.

President Donald Trump has promoted the use of hydroxychloroquine to fight COVID-19, but the drug has major potential side effects, especially for the heart. The FDA says people should not take it without a prescription and emphasizes that the malaria drugs being explored “are not FDA-approved for treatment of COVID-19.”

Mississippi had at least 3,360 confirmed cases and 122 deaths from the coronavirus as of Tuesday evening, according to numbers released Wednesday by the state Health Department. That was an increase of 273 cases and 11 deaths from the previous day. The state’s population is about 3 million.

The Health Department said cases have been confirmed in at least 66 long-term care facilities, such as nursing homes.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough. But for others, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, the highly contagious virus can cause severe symptoms and be fatal.

Mississippi remains under Gov. Tate Reeves's statewide stay-at-home order until at least early next week. Many businesses are closed, and tens of thousands have applied for state unemployment benefits.

Reeves on Tuesday said public school buildings will remain closed the rest of the semester, but he encouraged schools to continue distance-learning efforts. His original order to close schools began in mid-March and had been set to expire this Friday. Reeves said he extended the closures after consulting with health experts.

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 515504

Reported Deaths: 10296
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison34999558
DeSoto33360432
Hinds32743643
Jackson24906392
Rankin22565405
Lee16455245
Madison14954283
Jones14158248
Forrest13834260
Lauderdale12311323
Lowndes11357193
Lamar10693140
Pearl River9748244
Lafayette8868143
Hancock7849132
Washington7559169
Oktibbeha7229138
Monroe7068179
Pontotoc7033110
Warren6885178
Panola6791135
Neshoba6744210
Marshall6707142
Bolivar6468151
Union643598
Pike5942157
Alcorn5921107
Lincoln5540136
George510680
Prentiss508285
Tippah495683
Itawamba4884107
Scott478999
Tate4777117
Adams4776125
Leflore4749144
Copiah458195
Yazoo458092
Simpson4566117
Wayne443472
Covington434895
Sunflower4319106
Marion4295112
Coahoma4244110
Leake414191
Newton396182
Tishomingo386894
Grenada3789109
Stone366166
Jasper341266
Attala340490
Chickasaw318367
Winston318392
Clay312978
Clarke301695
Calhoun286850
Holmes272889
Smith270552
Yalobusha244947
Tallahatchie232353
Greene225149
Walthall222166
Lawrence220242
Perry214556
Amite210357
Webster206548
Noxubee188843
Montgomery182157
Carroll175441
Jefferson Davis174343
Tunica163539
Benton153139
Kemper145441
Choctaw137027
Claiborne134839
Humphreys132239
Franklin126530
Quitman107828
Wilkinson106139
Jefferson97134
Sharkey65321
Issaquena1957
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 847659

Reported Deaths: 16172
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1163752005
Mobile743371381
Madison53434738
Shelby38413371
Baldwin38171589
Tuscaloosa36131643
Montgomery34571782
Lee25664264
Calhoun22622519
Morgan22527408
Etowah20059520
Marshall18821318
Houston17769426
St. Clair16946359
Limestone16192220
Cullman16140305
Elmore15948295
Lauderdale15055307
Talladega14244302
DeKalb13061271
Walker12138380
Blount10765193
Autauga10545157
Jackson10204195
Coffee9435192
Colbert9363210
Dale9038192
Tallapoosa7283202
Russell710165
Chilton7078170
Covington6967197
Escambia6962144
Franklin6364108
Chambers5795142
Marion5435130
Dallas5302210
Pike5128109
Clarke485686
Lawrence4845130
Winston4785110
Geneva4650136
Bibb435495
Barbour370180
Butler3444101
Marengo342793
Monroe338366
Randolph337767
Pickens334790
Fayette331485
Henry321066
Cherokee319964
Hale318889
Crenshaw261678
Washington256852
Cleburne255460
Lamar253555
Clay252069
Macon245767
Conecuh193562
Coosa185847
Wilcox178338
Lowndes178268
Bullock152745
Perry141840
Sumter139741
Greene130345
Choctaw94328
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