First Confirmed UK case in Mississippi
The Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) confirms the first case of a COVID-19 variant strain in a Mississippi resident Monday.
A case of the B.1.1.7 UK variant strain of COVID-19 was confirmed during routine testing. No international travel or spread to contacts is known to have occurred, but additional investigation is ongoing.
The B.1.1.7 variant strain has been identified in 40 U.S. states and is known to spread more easily and quickly than other strains. While suspected, currently there is no direct evidence that this strain causes a more severe infection or a higher risk of death.
MSDH continues to expand surveillance for variant strains in Mississippi, and it is likely that additional cases will be identified. Current available vaccines are expected to be effective against variant strains, but further research continues.
Mississippians are strongly encouraged to wear a mask, social distance, avoid large gatherings, and wash hands frequently. Vaccination is also encouraged for those who are eligible. Current eligibility includes Mississippi residents or those who work in Mississippi ages 65 and older, or those 16-64 with certain underlying conditions, healthcare personnel, and residents of long term care facilities.
For eligibility criteria, visit the MSDH website at HealthyMS.com/covid19. To schedule an appointment at an MSDH drive-through clinic, visit covidvaccine.umc.edu or call the COVID-19 hotline at 1-877-978-6453.
Vaccinations are in high demand, and appointments may not be available in in all areas. Appointments for second doses should be available.
Free COVID-19 vaccinations for Mississippians when available can be obtained at drive-through sites around the state and from some local healthcare providers.
Adults aged 65 and older can be vaccinated at any of our drive-through locations, or at some private healthcare providers.
Anyone 16 to 64 years old with a chronic health condition that may put them at higher risk from COVID-19. (18 or older at our drive-through sites.) Qualifying health conditions: cancer, Chronic kidney disease, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), Down Syndrome, heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies, immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant, obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30 kg/m2 or higher but less than 40 kg/m2), Severe Obesity (BMI 40 kg/m2 or higher), Pregnancy, Sickle cell disease, Smoking, diabetes, or other medical conditions as determined by your medical provider
Note that your physician or medical provider may advise that you be vaccinated even if you do not have a health condition listed.