Pike County recorded another COVID-19 death — the first in more than six weeks and the 12th since March — and neighboring Lincoln and Walthall counties also recorded one new death each amid surging infections throughout Mississippi, state health officials said Tuesday.

When officials recorded the first deaths in Pike County on Easter weekend there were just 62 infections identified and 13 total deaths among Mississippians statewide.

During the time since Pike County’s last reported virus death, a lot has taken place, from meat shortages to the cancellation of the 2019-20 school year.

The latest Pike County death does not appear to be a resident of a long-term care facility. Of the 12 deaths reported in Pike County, six have been nursing home residents.

Lincoln County nursing homes have been hit even harder. Of the 34 deaths reported there, 26, were among nursing home residents.

Both of the deaths identified in Amite County were among residents of a long-term care facility.

There were 356 coronavirus infections identified in Pike County, an increase of nine since Monday.

Statewide, health officials reported 680 new infections on Tuesday, along with 14 new deaths, as health data showed a slight uptick in the number of coronavirus outbreaks among employees and residents of long-term care facilities.

State health officials had identified 27,274 infections and 1,073 deaths since the beginning of the outbreak on March 11.

Additionally, officials confirmed another four infections in Lincoln County, which now stands at 434 and 34 deaths.

Officials have identified 169 infections and four deaths in Walthall County.

Amite County recorded no new infections or deaths Tuesday, but that trend is likely to change in the coming days as the Mississippi State Department of Health will hold a drive-thru coronavirus testing clinic at the Harrison Building in Liberty on Thursday. Patients must be screened ahead of time in order to schedule an appointment. Testing will begin at noon and patients will be tested while they remain in their vehicles.

Anyone with symptoms of or possible exposure to coronavirus is encouraged to contact MSDH or complete a form online for initial screening.

While the majority of coronavirus patients who fall sick and die are between the ages of 60 and 80, recent state health data shows people between the ages of 18 and 29 are testing positive at the highest rate.

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