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Doc: Delta variant spread 'like a tsunami' in Mississippi

Dr. Thomas Dobbs | Source: Mississippi State Department of Health

Mississippi’s top health official said the delta coronavirus variant is “sweeping across Mississippi like a tsunami” as the state reported more than 3,000 new cases of the highly transmittable virus in a single day.

Posted: Aug 5, 2021 3:53 PM

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) — Mississippi's top health official said the delta coronavirus variant is “sweeping across Mississippi like a tsunami” as the state reported more than 3,000 new cases of the highly transmittable virus in a single day Thursday.

“If we look at our trajectory, we see that it’s continuing to increase without any real demonstration of leveling off or decreasing,” State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs said during a virtual briefing with press.

The state reported 3,164 new cases of coronavirus Thursday, marking 356,055 since the start of the pandemic. More than 7,600 people have died of coronavirus complications in the state of around 3 million.

Dobbs said 90% of new coronavirus cases in Mississippi are now the delta variant. The state's major hospital systems are overwhelmed — 178 new patients were hospitalized in a single day Wednesday — with almost no ICU beds available for patients, he said.

Public institutions such as the University of Mississippi, Mississippi State and the University of Southern Mississippi announced Wednesday and Thursday that they would require students and staff to wear masks indoors, citing the surge in delta variant cases. The institutions said the decisions were made based on the department of health guidance.

Like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Mississippi Department of Health has advised that people learning and working in school settings wear masks to prevent the spread of the virus. Many K-12 public school districts have opted to create their own policies requiring masks before the start of the year, but some have resisted.

Republican Gov. Tate Reeves has said he won’t put a blanket mask requirement in place. Dobbs said Thursday they aren't seeing “a lot of motivation for statewide mandates right now," but urged schools to think carefully about what is the safest policy for their communities.

“You can’t fill a classroom with non-immune kids without a mask on with the most contagious coronavirus we’ve ever seen circulating and expect for it not to spread — it’s just biology," Dobbs said. "Our will and desire to abandon safety measures does not trump the reality of the biology of the delta virus.”

Mississippi Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 479326

Reported Deaths: 9353
CountyCasesDeaths
Harrison32779484
Hinds30924582
DeSoto30319353
Jackson23542341
Rankin21235366
Lee14803219
Madison14120271
Jones13327223
Forrest13078236
Lauderdale11501303
Lowndes10377176
Lamar10163130
Pearl River9008217
Lafayette8193137
Hancock7404111
Oktibbeha6909122
Washington6900150
Monroe6459159
Neshoba6441201
Warren6387163
Pontotoc623093
Panola6203125
Bolivar6072144
Marshall6068121
Union571386
Pike5574135
Alcorn533289
Lincoln5283131
George466072
Scott454796
Leflore4444140
Prentiss443377
Tippah442180
Itawamba441599
Adams4376116
Tate4327101
Simpson4313112
Wayne430766
Copiah429587
Yazoo419686
Covington413292
Sunflower4123104
Marion4073104
Leake395486
Coahoma391098
Newton367274
Grenada3543104
Stone350359
Tishomingo333288
Attala324286
Jasper313162
Winston303091
Clay294173
Chickasaw286265
Clarke279890
Calhoun263940
Holmes261387
Smith248048
Yalobusha219647
Tallahatchie217550
Walthall209958
Greene206845
Lawrence205732
Perry198553
Amite197651
Webster195042
Noxubee177739
Montgomery171654
Jefferson Davis167442
Carroll161437
Tunica150834
Benton141533
Kemper138039
Claiborne126134
Choctaw126026
Humphreys125937
Franklin116328
Quitman103426
Wilkinson101536
Jefferson87333
Sharkey62320
Issaquena1926
Unassigned00

Alabama Coronavirus Cases

Cases: 778549

Reported Deaths: 13665
CountyCasesDeaths
Jefferson1105871747
Mobile704651206
Madison49152610
Baldwin35946479
Shelby35796302
Tuscaloosa33410532
Montgomery32906672
Lee22231216
Calhoun20791397
Morgan19605326
Etowah18837449
Marshall17465272
Houston16452368
St. Clair15233293
Limestone14376182
Cullman14348246
Elmore14241256
Lauderdale13298278
Talladega12699230
DeKalb12036233
Walker10430323
Autauga9568133
Blount9555152
Jackson9235146
Coffee8728169
Colbert8426179
Dale8410170
Escambia6526114
Tallapoosa6501172
Covington6396163
Chilton6293141
Russell598555
Franklin5719100
Chambers5315133
Marion4734115
Dallas4665182
Clarke457076
Pike456294
Geneva4315116
Winston417192
Lawrence4086108
Bibb401680
Barbour341968
Marengo323183
Butler314988
Monroe314652
Pickens300470
Randolph299955
Henry298356
Hale289383
Cherokee284652
Fayette275672
Washington244848
Crenshaw235168
Clay225163
Macon217657
Cleburne217149
Lamar192140
Conecuh179646
Lowndes170158
Coosa166432
Wilcox155736
Bullock147742
Perry136036
Sumter124136
Greene120142
Choctaw72826
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Fall has started off exactly as you would have anticipated and it looks like we should have a number of dry days still ahead, but this isn’t a permanent switch, because heat is pegged to return.
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