Mayor Tommy Irwin is again urging residents to take the precautions that will help slow the spread of COVID-19.

He is asking residents to please wear a face mask when in large gatherings or out shopping in the community.

“This virus is serious and by no means over,” he said. “You must protect yourself and your family. We must have all our city and county citizens working together to protect our loved ones.”

The numbers reported by the Mississippi State Department of Health showed 990 new cases statewide for the day ended at 6 p.m. Friday – about 100 short of the daily record – and four new deaths, including one in Alcorn County, bringing the county’s death count to two. The new death was a long-term care facility resident.

Magnolia Regional Health Center currently has six hospitalized patients who are being treated for COVID-19.

Alcorn County’s case count has accelerated, nearly doubling in the second half of June and rising from 53 to 68 (+28 percent) in the seven days ended at 6 p.m. Friday.

With spikes in case counts happening in many areas, some states and local jurisdictions are mandating the wearing of a face mask.

In response to the state’s rising numbers, Gov. Tate Reeves paused any further steps to reopen the state’s economy on Wednesday.

“That was not an easy call,” he said. “I see, I hear and I know the cost that these measures carry.”

But, he said, “Things are getting worse, not better.”

State Health Officer Thomas Dobbs said the numbers reflect “people aggressively trying to return to normal when it wasn’t time. It’s not that the rules are not appropriate, it’s that those following the rules were just not there.”

Where people are congregating, he said, is where problems are arising, with notable spikes in population centers such as DeSoto County, Hinds County, Rankin County and coastal Harrison County.

Staff Writer

Jebb Johnston is a 1991 Alcorn Central High School graduate and a 1995 Ole Miss journalism graduate. His primary beats are city and county government.

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