MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The impact of the novel coronavirus is being felt all across the Mid-South where new cases are being announced every day and new steps are being taken to help limit the spread. Keep checking back for the latest COVID-19 updates throughout the day.
Below are the latest updates for Thursday, March 19
UPDATE (7:30 p.m.) First Horizon confirmed a worker at one of its Memphis locations tested positive for the coronavirus. In a statement to FOX13, a spokesperson said:
“Recently, we learned that an employee who doesn’t have direct contact with customers tested positive for COVID-19. As part of our Business Continuity Plan and safety protocol, and in accordance with federal and local health guidance, our employee is self-quarantined for two weeks. We have notified all employees who came in direct contact with this individual of the potential exposure and have asked them to self-quarantine for two weeks. We have also sanitized the location and notified the employees who work at that location.”
UPDATE (4:40 p.m.) A spokesperson for FedEx confirmed to FOX13 that someone who works at a FedEx office tested positive for the coronavirus. The office has been closed for cleaning.
"An individual contributor working in the FedEx office building on Shady Grove has reported testing positive for COVID-19 and is currently recovering at home. The health and safety of our team members and customers is our top priority. We have closed the office for a thorough cleaning and disinfecting, and all employees who work in that building will be permitted back in once that process is complete. "
UPDATE (4:18 p.m.) The Mayor of Memphis has declared a state of civil emergency. He is also requiring all restaurants to perform only take-out or delivery services and bars, gyms and other workout facilities to close. In addition, I am asking that all worship services either be streamed online or postponed until further notice.
“During this time, we strongly encourage you to continue to-go orders and support our local restaurants and their staff. We’re providing on-street parking relief exclusively for food delivery vehicles at various restaurant locations Downtown and Midtown where parking meters are installed. For a Downtown restaurant pick-up, take-out and delivery, go here.,” the mayor said.
UPDATE (4:00 p.m.) Heath officials confirm first coronavirus death in Mississippi.
The case was in a male in the age range of 60-65. He was from Hancock County. The patient died in a Louisiana hospital.
UPDATE (3:41 p.m.) The Mississippi Department of Health confirmed another case of the coronavirus in the state. The case is in Lafayette County.
The case was not included in the original morning update, but officials said it will make the list tomorrow morning.
The Mayor of Oxford took to social media to confirm also.
UPDATE (2:55 p.m.) Arkansas health officials announced 62 confirmed cases of the coronavirus.
There are cases in 20 counties including Poinsett County.
UPDATE (2:20 p.m.) Memphis in May, which includes Beale Street Music Festival and the World Championship Barbecue Cooking competition, have been postponed amid the coronavirus outbreak.
UPDATE (2:05 p.m.) Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris has declared a State of Emergency for Shelby County as new cases have been confirmed.
Officials said during a news conference that this confirms the county currently has community transmission.
The Shelby County Health Department said that they will begin posting the age ranges of those infected on their website.
The State of Emergency declaration will allow the county to ask for federal funding to pay for resources to help stop community transmission of coronavirus.
UPDATE: (2:00 p.m.) The Tennessee Department of Health says there are now 154 confirmed cases in the state, including new cases in our area.
As announced this morning, there are six new cases in Shelby County, bringing the total 10.
Dyer County, the second county in our region to confirm infection, also has their first case.
UPDATE: (1:32 p.m.)
The Shelby County District Attorney’s Office is responding after a photo saying one of their employees was possibly exposed to the coronavirus made its way around social media.
DA Amy Weirich released the following message surrounding the circumstances: “Earlier today an unauthorized sign was posted that has created chaos and confusion. Let me be clear, I know of no one in the DA’s Office testing positive for Covid-19. A couple of our employees have been in contact with an individual who has been in contact with an individual who has tested positive for Covid-19. Out of an abundance of caution, we have sent those employees home and asked them to self-monitor. We are also asking employees who have returned from high-risk states or high-risk countries to stay home for two weeks. Our offices are open and we are handling in-custody cases as instructed by the Tennessee Supreme Court.”
UPDATE: (1:03 p.m.): Lowe’s corporate office has confirmed to FOX13 Memphis that one of their employees at the 500 block of North Perkins location has tested positive for the coronavirus. The associate last worked at the store on March 9 and employees who had close contact with the patient have been put on a period of paid leave.
The store was also extensively cleaned per CDC guidelines, Lowe’s said in a news release.
Below is the full statement:
" The well-being of our associates and customers is Lowe’s priority, and we continue to work with the CDC and state health department on the confirmed COVID-19 case of a Lowe’s associate at our Memphis store at 585 North Perkins Road. The associate has been quarantined and is receiving care. This associate last worked on March 9, and at the encouragement of local officials, the store remains open. The store has been extensively cleaned per CDC guidelines, and in an abundance of caution, associates who had worked closely with this individual over a period of time have been put on a paid leave. "
UPDATE: (1:01 p.m.): Shelby Farms is making changes following the coronavirus outbreak and the increase in the number of cases across Shelby County.
The Visitor Center, Lake’s Edge Gift Shop, Bike Rentals, and Boat Rentals are closed until further notice. Visitor Center restrooms will remain open, but will only be accessible from exterior entrances.
UPDATE: (12:55 p.m.) Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris took to Twitter to defend his recent trip to Ghana. He also announced he would not be self-quarantining.
“According to the Health Department and CDC guidelines, the Mayor does not require self-quarantine or isolation for recent travel. The Mayor will practice social distancing and encourages the public to do the same. It’s important to avoid panic and listen to the CDC,” The
UPDATE: (12:20 p.m.) The Mississippi State Department of Health has advised that given the ongoing spread of COVID-19 in the state and the shortage of protective medical equipment, elective medical procedures and non-essential medical visits must be postponed at this time.
These measures will protect patients and healthcare professionals by minimizing potential exposure to COVID-19 and preserving valuable protective equipment.
UPDATE: (10:53 a.m.) The City of Memphis is opening a drive-thru testing location for the coronavirus.
"The City of Memphis is taking every precaution necessary to limit the spread of COVID19 through policy, declaration, and direct action.
In that same spirit, we are taking action now to get ready for drive-thru testing at Tiger Lane when test kits become more widely available. We are currently working through logistics to make sure once we have tests the process is smooth and efficient. No tests are being administered today.
As we have more concrete information, we will share times of operation, traffic flow, and when you can expect to get the test results."
UPDATE: (10:32 a.m.) Arkansas Health Department is now reporting 46 cases of the coronavirus. There are none in the Mid-South portion of the state.
UPDATE: (10:29 a.m.) Mississippi public schools will be closed until April 17, the Mississippi Board of Education said during a meeting that was broadcast on Facebook.
UPDATE: (10:20 a.m.) The Shelby County Health Department confirmed 6 new cases of coronavirus in the county last night.
These cases bring the total of confirmed cases in Shelby County to 10.
UPDATE: (10:15 a.m.) The Mississippi State Department of Health has confirmed 16 new confirmed cases of coronavirus in the state.
UPDATE: (9:15 a.m.) A list of assessment sites for COVID-19 has been released for Shelby County.
The following locations can give assessments for those experiencing symptoms of COVID-19:
UPDATE (8:45 a.m.) Burger King is offering two free kids meals with any purchase beginning March 23.
The purchase must be made through the BK app for takeout or drive-thru orders at participating U.S. restaurants, according to a press release.
UPDATE (6:25 am.) Can’t find toilet paper at the grocery store? No problem!
Elwood’s Shack on Summer Avenue is giving away free rolls with every order.
UPDATE (5:00 a.m.) Here are the latest number of confirmed cases across the Mid-South as of this morning:
Tennessee 98 - In our area, there are 10 in Shelby County
Mississippi 50 - In our area, there are 2 in DeSoto County and 2 in Coahoma County
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