Franklin's COVID-19 cases climb by 17 during past week

by Nicole Stokes

Seventeen new cases of COVID-19 were reported in Franklin County since Tuesday, Nov. 23, according to the Mississippi Department of Health.

As of Tuesday, Nov. 30, the local positive coronavirus case count stood at 1,255.

No new deaths were reported during the past week, with the number of local fatalities related to the illness remaining at 29.

Statewide, the cumulative number of COVID-19 cases reported since the onset of the pandemic, which started in March, 2020, was 513,622.

Of that number, 10,264 died from complications of the illness in all 82 counties.

In other coronavirus-related news, a new variation of the illness — known as the Omicron variant — was discovered in South Africa on Wednesday, Nov. 24.

No cases of the variant have been found in Mississippi to date, according to Liz Sharlot, director of communications for the Mississippi Department of Health.

“(We) are aware of this new variant and (are) conducting surveillance through (our) public health laboratory,” she said. “We have not identified any cases of Omicron in Mississippi.

“For now, we will monitor transmission of the variant and vaccine effectiveness. Now is the time to get vaccinated, get your booster and continue to wear masks.”

Local COVID-19 vaccination rates continue to rise with 3,726 — or 48 percent — of Franklin County residents reported to have received at least one dose of the inoculation while 3,383 — 44 percent — are now considered to be fully vaccinated.

Franklin County Memorial Hospital in Meadville is administering shots and boosters from 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m., on Tuesdays and Thursdays. To schedule an appointment, call 601-384-8264.

Throughout Mississippi, 1,509,968 residents — 49 percent — have received at least one dose of the vaccination and 1,345,083 — 44 percent — of residents have been fully vaccinated.