Analysis: Percent of hospitalizations from COVID-19 dropping in Miss.

Updated: May. 25, 2020 at 9:24 PM CDT
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JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - As Mississippi stands to hit 15,000 total coronavirus cases by the end of this month, state leaders say hospitalization data is one of the biggest indicators to help determine if the state’s social distancing measures and COVID-19 strategies are working.

Gov. Tate Reeves and others have said during the daily press conferences that the number of people hospitalized from coronavirus has remained steady, even dropping at times.

The actual numbers from the Mississippi State Department of Health show that’s somewhat true.

3 On Your Side analyzed the data, using a seven-day average of total COVID-19 patients -- those with confirmed and suspected cases in the hospital -- and for ten days, that average dropped before coming back up around May 20.

Since that time, it has started dropping again.

Some experts have said we’ve stabilized, others have said we’re trending downward, and all of that can sound confusing.

What does it all mean?

3 On Your Side looked at active COVID-19 cases -- total cases minus recoveries -- to see if a smaller percentage of these cases involve patients with more serious conditions.

Over the last two weeks, not only is the number of patients dropping, but the percentage is, too.

On May 11, 13 percent of all active positive cases were hospitalized, a percentage that has dropped to 10.3 percent two weeks later.

That means a smaller percentage of those cases actually end up in the hospital, meaning far fewer have symptoms serious enough to go to the ER.

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