Madison Co. sees 140 new virus cases within a day, ‘alarming’ ICU numbers

JACKSON, Tenn. — The Jackson-Madison County Regional Health Department confirms another spike in COVID-19 cases, with 140 new positive results announced on Wednesday.

Covid December

“This morning the top counties for hospitalizations in our system are Madison County, and Gibson County is following closely behind,” said Amy Garner, chief compliance and communications officer for West Tennessee Healthcare.

Garner says there’s also a high number of cases in Dyer County, and an increase of hospitalizations in Benton County.

“We have 95 COVID patients at Jackson-Madison County General, and 20 of those patients are on a ventilator this morning,” Garner said.

The total number of patients that have been on a ventilator since the beginning of the pandemic is now 361.

Garner says the newly founded Bamlanivimab antibody treatment could be seen as a preventative measure to keep people from having to be hospitalized.

“We’ve already treated a number of patients, and we’re looking to expand the amount of patients that we can actually treat because we’re seeing some promise with that treatment,” Garner said.

Madison County Mayor Jimmy Harris says the COVID rate is increasing and hospitalizations are “alarming.”

“It’s an alarming number of how many is in ICU and how many that are in the ICU that are on a ventilator,” Mayor Harris said.

He says for now, there will be no restriction changes, but things could change if necessary.

“I do anticipate if there’s not a significant reduction in the number of cases that we could extend that, but we’ll just wait and see what the numbers show,” Mayor Harris said.

Harris says he wants to commend those who have been abiding by the mask mandate thus far.

“If you go into a store or you go into a restaurant, almost everyone that I see has a mask on, and I do think masks are our first line of defense, and I do think wearing a mask can have an impact on reducing the number of cases,” Harris said.

Harris says the result of Thanksgiving travel is not accounted for yet, but feels there will be additional spike in COVID cases.

He says it’s concerning for the upcoming Christmas travel.

Garner says healthcare officials are hopeful about getting the vaccine, and says they should be receiving the first doses within the next two weeks.

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