3/17/20 - Latest from MSDH | School Closure Obstacles | Effects on Service Industries
More from the State Health Department as cases of COVID 19 grow nationwide.
And, a look at some of the obstacles linked to statewide school closures.
Then, how social distancing is affecting one service industry.
Mississippi Governor Tate Reeves joined other governors across the nation on a conference call with President Trump on Monday to discuss state-level efforts to flatten the curve of COVID-19 transmission. State Health Officer Thomas Dobbs says community transmission of COVID 19, the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, in Mississippi is low. But, based on national trends, he is revising some of the state's recommendations regarding social distancing. Testing and access to testing continue to be under heavy scrutiny. Dr. Dobbs says the state is now able to get test results in 24 hours, and says the state has plans to establish fast-track clinics.
Schools across the state have closed for the remainder of this week due to the coronaviurs threat, and many are making preparations to shift to online instruction - keeping school buildings empty well into the spring semester. With mandatory state testing just around corner, parents, legislators, and officials alike are concerned the effects on instruction are too great to justify continuing with the tests. House Democrat Tom Miles of Forest introduced a suspension resolution Monday that would exempt schools from testing. He tells our Michael Guidry he has heard from worried parents and teachers across his district.
School closures are also affecting Mississippi's blood supply. Merle Eldrige is the Director of Donor Recruitment and Mobile Collections for Mississippi Blood Services. She tells us high school and college drives usually make up the bulk of their donations in the spring. But with so many canceled, the organization is in dire need of donors.
The Coronavirus outbreak is causing concern and frustration for some businesses in Mississippi, and is reshaping how they do business. This is especially true for service industries like restaurants and bars, and the staff that relies on wages made primarily of tips. Our team talks with industry personnel about how social distancing is affecting sales and wages.