Mississippi health officials issued new COVID-19 recommendations Friday in response to a “rapid rise” of delta variant cases and outbreaks.
The Mississippi State Department of Health is recommending that all residents 65 and older, regardless of vaccination status, and those with chronic underlying medical conditions of any age should avoid all indoor mass gatherings for at least the next two weeks.
“We’re seeing a lot of new (delta) cases,” said State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs. “A quarter of our people 65 and up aren’t vaccinated and we’ve seen break-through illness with this age group. Wouldn’t it be sad that you’ve made it this far through the pandemic, and then something bad happens?”
MSDH officials said Mississippians who are 12 and older should receive a COVID-19 vaccination and those who are not fully vaccinated should wear a mask when indoors in public settings.
“We are seeing numerous outbreaks at mass gatherings: camps, schools, faith-based, funerals, social gatherings,” Dobb said.
On Monday, the MSDH reported 796 new cases since Friday and two new deaths.
In Lafayette County, there were 19 new cases reported in the last week. As of Sunday, four people were in the Baptist Memorial Hospital-North Mississippi hospital with COVID-19 and two were in the ICU unit.
Across the state, the number of hospitalizations and people on ventilators has increased since July 4; however, they are at the lowest since May 2020.