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Panola County records third COVID-19 death; testing site named

UMCC, state health department will have testing site in Sardis on June 1

A third COVID-19 death has been reported in Panola County. The daily report of coronavirus infections, deaths, and trends by the Mississippi State Department of Health contained the information in its Wednesday morning release.

The report shows that Panola County has no new reported cases since the Tuesday listing. Data released Wednesday was what the state had compiled as of 6 p.m. the day before.

Overall, Panola has 64 confirmed cases, although the great majority of those are not active, with approximately 55 of those patients recovered. The three deaths from COVID-19 in the county is average for surrounding counties – Quitman has no deaths, Tate and Tallahatchie one each, Grenada three, and Yalobusha five, all in a long term care facility.

Lafayette County has 125 cases on record with four deaths, one from a long term care facility.

No positive cases have been found in any of the three long term care facilities in Panola County. Emergency Operations Director Daniel Cole said the staff and management of the local nursing homes were early to lock down their facilities to visitors and deliveries and minimized all exposure of their residents.

Statewide there have been a reported 14,044 cases and 670 deaths. Of those cases, 1,767 have been in long term care facilities resulting in 341 deaths.

The statistics indicate that 9,401 patients are presumed to have recovered from COVID-19 based on a 21-day period following hospitalization or a 14-day period of positive tests that did not require the patient to be hospitalized.

Residents of Panola County and surrounding communities can be tested for COVID-19 next week as the University of Mississippi Medical Center and Mississippi State Department of Health continue efforts to stem virus transmission by setting up one-day, drive-through collection sites.

Anyone can be tested who is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, including fever, cough, shortness of breath or sore throat; or who has a known or potential exposure to someone confirmed with the virus.

Those who want to be tested must first get an appointment by going through a free screening from a UMMC clinician, either through the C Spire Health telehealth smartphone app or by phone. The fastest and easiest way to get screened and tested is with the C Spire Health app. It’s available daily from 8 a.m.-8 p.m.

On Monday, June 1, testing will be at the parking lot of the old Fred’s building located at 411 E. Lee Street in Sardis.

Testing hours are noon-4 p.m. Only those with appointments will be tested.

Hundreds of people in Mississippi communities have taken advantage of the UMMC/MSDH drive-through collection sites. Those numbers include, as of the end of the day May 26, a total 2,684 people at 74 one-day testing states statewide, plus another 6,308 at the Mississippi State Fairgrounds, for a total of 8,992 tested.

The Mississippi Emergency Management Agency and the Mississippi National Guard are partnering with UMMC and MSDH to coordinate mobile testing sites. UMMC and C Spire have partnered to make the screening free to all Mississippians.

Those without smartphones who want to be screened for testing can call (601) 496-7200.

During drive-through testing, health care professionals will collect specimen samples via a nose swab. Those being tested will not exit their vehicle. For more information about testing, click here.