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COVID-19 case total surpasses 800 in Lafayette County with 169 active

The month of July has seen a major surge in COVID-19 cases throughout Mississippi, including Lafayette County.

On Friday, the Mississippi State Department of Health reported 16 new cases in Lafayette County as of 6 p.m. on July 30for a total of 837 cases since March 19. Friday’s number comes after Lafayette County set a new record of 34 cases in a single day, breaking the previous high of 31 cases reported on July 25.

According to data from the City of Oxford’s website, there were 169 active cases as of July 30. That is an increase in active cases in three of the last four days.

After not reporting a new death due to COVID-19 complications since May 26, Lafayette County reported one new death three days straight from Wednesday to Friday. Lafayette’s number of total deaths is currently at seven.

With the report of an outbreak at Oxford’s Mississippi Veterans Home earlier this week, the long-term care facility case total has rapidly increased this week. The current total as of Friday was 66 LTC cases and three deaths in long-term care facilities in Lafayette County.

Governor Tate Reeves added eight new counties to his hotspot list on Thursday. The counties placed on that list fall under an executive order with tighter social distancing restrictions and a mask mandate indoors and outdoors when social distancing is not possible. Lafayette County has yet to be place on the list, but Pontotoc and Lee Counties were added on Thursday.

“We continue to have daily conversations with the Department of Health and healthcare providers about further measures,” Oxford Mayor Robyn Tannehill said in a video posted to her Facebook page on Thursday. “I’m told by Dr. (Thomas) Dobbs that at the Department of Health that family and social gatherings continue seem to be where most cases are being generated. I know people are so tired of me begging folks to follow the safety requirements and truthfully I do believe that 95 percent of our population is following these requirements. We know what works. We’ve seen proof that wearing masks, social distancing and hand washing works. At this time, our Board believes the plans in place are effective. Personal responsibility is the key.”

Tannehill returned to her office at City Hall on Thursday, ending a 14-day quarantine following a positive COVID-19 test on July 15.

As of Thursday, there were 1,249 Mississippians hospitalized due to COVID-19 with 989 of them having a confirmed case and 260 others with a suspected case. Of that total, 297 people were in the Intensive Care Unit and 176 were on ventilators.