MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A potential silver lining, COVID cases across all three Mid-South states are on the decline. However, in Shelby County, cases are up despite the universal mask mandate in place.
Mid-South states may be beginning to get a handle on new COVID cases. Data show the seven-day average of new cases is dropping across all three states.
“It’s very important that we should wear a mask because it helps everyone,” said Ruby Gray.
Monday’s seven-day average of 834.9 was the third-highest ever. Despite this information, a local doctor is adamant masks are proven to work and people should continue to mask up.
”We’ve seen it for the last couple of weeks trending down and that’s been encouraging,” said Baptist Memorial Hospital Infectious Disease Specialist Dr. Steve Threlkeld.
Across Arkansas, data show the seven-day average of new cases is down 21% in the last two weeks. In Mississippi, it’s down 48% in the last two weeks.
While cases are down across Tennessee, they’re up in Shelby County. The only county with a mask mandate across all three states with a mask mandate. So, is it working?
”It’s difficult to take an extremely local piece of data and trend to try to make much out of it over a week or two. It’s the longer trend that matters,” said Threlkeld.
Dr. Threlkeld encouraged people to use the best line of defense vaccinations.
“No matter how you slice it, even if you have had a natural infection, it more than doubles your protection and it’s certainly way beyond that if you have not been vaccinated or infected,” said Threlkeld.
”If you’re following what you’re supposed to do then yes, I think the numbers will go down, but if you’re not doing what you’re supposed to do then the numbers will go up,” said Gray.
According to a new study by the CDC, unvaccinated people are 11 times more likely to die from the delta variant. It’s something to keep in mind if you’re still on the fence about getting vaccinated.
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