COVID-19 cases on the rise


Compiled By Steve Swogetinsky

The Kemper Messenger

Kemper County had an increase of 46 reported cases of COVID-19 during the past week which ended November 22.

These numbers were reported by the Mississippi Department of Health. Since last March, the county had 408 reported cases and 15 deaths. However, according to some local reports, there have been more deaths that apparently were not reported to the health department.

COVID-19 is a new respiratory virus that causes flu-like illness ranging from mild to severe, with symptoms of fever, coughing, fatigue and difficulty breathing. Like the flu, COVID-19 spreads person-to-person by close contact (within 6 feet) and by coughing or sneezing. COVID-19 may also spread by touching surfaces contaminated by the virus.

The number of new cases has grown across the state. According to health department numbers, there were 9,280 new cases in the state in the past week. There have been 143,879 cases reported in Mississippi since March and 3,676 reported deaths.

With the number of cases growing, health officials have urged people to avoid large holiday gatherings during the Thanksgiving weekend. In order to protect the more vulnerable population, health department officials have strongly suggested that travel be avoided and for people to stay home.

Kemper County leaders continue to take steps to protect the public. There is a county-wide mandate for masks to be worn. Schools have gone to virtual leaning in recent weeks. And precautions have been take for people entering county building. In December, the county board of supervisors will hold their meetings by telephone.

People at risk for serious illness from COVID-19 are adults 65 and over, those who are obese, those with a chronic illness such as heart disease, diabetes or lung disease, and anyone receiving treatments which may compromise their immune system. According to the health department, hese people should take precautions at all times to limit their exposure to others who may be ill:

Stay home as much as possible.

Limit your contact with others when you are away from home, especially in indoor settings.

Limit your contact with visitors and with other members of your household who are frequently in public places.

Keep more space (6 feet if possible) between you and others as you go through the day.

If you do go out in public, keep away from others who are sick, and practice consistent social distancing. Pay closer attention to hygiene and cleanliness.

Wash your hands often, especially after being in public places.


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