Is Mississippi’s coronavirus curve flattening? Here’s what the numbers show.

Published 10:51 pm Tuesday, May 5, 2020

State, regional and national leaders have preached the need to “flatten the curve” on coronavirus cases to avoid overwhelming the country’s hospital capacity.

Social distancing and government-mandated shutdowns have put much of our economy at a standstill. But are the number of cases in Mississippi slowing down? Data from the Mississippi State Health Department indicates the virus is still spreading rapidly across pockets of Mississippi.

The good news is social distancing in Mississippi seemingly has prevented a surge on hospital resources.

But cases are not on the decline.

Through Tuesday’s data released by the state, Mississippi’s 7-day average of new coronavirus cases stood at 265 per day.

That’s the highest it’s been since the pandemic begin.

While that average isn’t growing exponentially like some feared, it’s certainly not declining either.

On Tuesday the state’s top health officer confirmed the ongoing spread of the virus.

“We are having ongoing community transmission in the state,” said Dr. Thomas Dobbs, Mississippi State Health Officer. “No place in the state is free from coronavirus.”

Dobbs and Gov. Tate Reeves spoke to reporters Tuesday during a news conference. Earlier in the day the state had released updated statistics showing 330 new cases were reported in Mississippi the day prior. It was the second-highest daily number of new cases on record.

The record was set on Friday when just less than 400 cases were reported.

Reeves pointed to certain pockets of the state were the virus seems to be spreading worse.

“There are a relatively small number of counties where we’re seeing the majority of new cases,” he said. “If you look at the last two weeks, for instance, there are more than 100 cases in Scott County and one new case in Alcorn County … I do not think we should treat these two the same.”

In total, Mississippi has reported 8,207 cases of COVID-19 coronavirus since the pandemic began. The state has reported 342 people have died from the virus.