7-day takeaway: Mississippi COVID-19 cases drop 25%, deaths decline in the past week – Jackson Clarion Ledger

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700,000 U.S. COVID deaths: National Cathedral bell tolls for one hour

The National Cathedral tolled its 12-ton funeral bell 700 times over one hour in memory of the 700,000 Americans who have died of COVID.

STAFF VIDEO, USA TODAY

Each week, COVID-19 data looks different. 

The Clarion Ledger regularly publishes the number of Mississippi COVID-19 cases, deaths, vaccinations and other relevant pandemic health news in efforts to keep residents informed. Here are the findings from state officials from Oct. 1-7.

COVID-19 case counts and related deaths are pulled from the Mississippi State Department of Health.

Last week: COVID cases decrease by over 30% in one week, related deaths decline

School outbreaks

Of 740 schools reporting from 73 of Mississippi’s 82 counties, there were 15 COVID-19 outbreaks in schools statewide from Sept. 27 to Oct. 1, according to the health department’s Wednesday report.

Over 103 teachers and staff had confirmed coronavirus cases, with 147 in quarantine. 

Since the Mississippi State Department of Health began reporting COVID-19 cases in public schools, nearly 22,000 pre-K through high school students have tested positive for the virus.

Dig deeper: Pediatric COVID hospitalizations still high as some Miss. schools drop mask requirements

Some Mississippi schools have begun to relax mask mandates as community cases have started to decline. The American Academy of Pediatrics Mississippi Chapter wrote a Sept. 30 memo to school leaders and parents that mask-wearing in schools is imperative to lessening COVID-19 transmission.

“Acute COVID hospitalizations are increasing again it seems and it is timed exactly with schools dropping mask requirements,” Charlotte Hobbs, M.D. and professor of pediatric infectious disease at Children’s of Mississippi, said in the memo.

In a UMMC news release Tuesday, Hobbs noted the increase of Multisystem Inflammatory Syndrome in Children — a rare and serious condition thought to be a delayed reaction to COVID-19 that attacks the body’s healthy cells. With MIS-C, different parts of a child’s body can become inflamed, like the skin or gastrointestinal organs, according to the CDC.

From the time COVID-19 came into Mississippi in March 2020 to mid-August, more than 93 children in Mississippi have had MIS-C, the Mississippi State Department of Health reported. Five of those children died.

“What we have now is both MIS-C and severe acute COVID-19, and I think it’s because of schools dropping mask mandates,” Hobbs said Tuesday. 

Coronavirus cases in Mississippi

Within the week, 5,276 COVID-19 cases were recorded, down 1,721 or 25% less from the previous week. 

COVID-19 deaths in Mississippi 

There were 178 coronavirus-related deaths reported from Oct. 1-7. The rate is down 27 deaths from the previous week. However, a handful of deaths occurred over several weeks.

Vaccinations in Mississippi

The state has administered around 2.84 million doses as of Thursday. The state reports a fully vaccinated rate of 42%, which is behind the nation’s average of 56%

Read more: It’s OK to get the flu shot and a COVID-19 vaccine at the same time

Have a health story? Or a health-related tip? Send it along to shaselhorst@gannett.com, on Twitter at @HaselhorstSarah or call 601-331-9307.

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