Coronavirus live blog: Shelby County reports 98 new COVID-19 cases and 3 deaths

By Updated: May 03, 2020 11:24 AM CT | Published: May 02, 2020 10:04 AM CT
<strong>National Guard medics collect nasal swabs as hundreds of Memphians are tested for COVID-19 at the Christ Community Health Services testing site in Frayser on Saturday, April 25.</strong> (Jim Weber/Daily Memphian)

National Guard medics collect nasal swabs as hundreds of Memphians are tested for COVID-19 at the Christ Community Health Services testing site in Frayser on Saturday, April 25. (Jim Weber/Daily Memphian)

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You can protect yourself and help prevent the spread of coronavirus by:

  • Wash your hands regularly for 20 seconds, with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rub
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a disposable tissue or flexed elbow when you cough or sneeze
  • Avoid close contact (within six feet) with people
  • Stay home and self-isolate from others in the household if you feel unwell
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth if your hands are not clean

To view the city’s stay-at-home order, click here.

Here’s the latest from Memphis and Shelby County, below, when it comes to dealing with the novel coronavirus. To view our full coverage, check out The Daily Memphian’s  coronavirus landing page.

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May 02, 2020

Shelby County reports 98 new COVID-19 cases and 3 deaths

10:33 AM CT, May 2

The number of positive coronavirus cases in Shelby County has risen by 98 individuals, according to new data released on Saturday, May 2.

In its daily report, the Shelby County Health Department confirmed 2,654 cases of the novel coronavirus, increasing from 2,556 the day prior.

In Shelby County, 53 individuals have died from the virus, at an increase of three newly reported deaths.

Information provided in charts by the SCHD regarding ongoing and resolved outbreaks points to two of the three new deaths coming from local nursing homes: one at Parkway Health and Rehabilitation Center, one at The King’s Daughters and Sons Home.

A total of 30,777 individuals in Shelby County have been tested, as of Saturday. That number is up 1,437 tests since Friday, May 1, when 29,340 tests had been administered. The rate of positivity of tests in the county now sits at just about 8.6%.

Of the total 2,654 people in Shelby County who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, 1,392 have recovered. With 53 reported deaths, 1,209 people have been identified as current cases.

Throughout Tennessee, 11,891 cases of COVID-19 have resulted in 204 deaths. In the state, 186,132 tests have been administered, and 5,546 Tennesseans have recovered from the virus. A total of 1,113 individuals have been hospitalized.


Local coronavirus cases, at a glance

10:45 AM CT, May 2



How COVID-19 cases are growing locally and statewide

10:46 AM CT, May 2




May 01, 2020

Rhodes dispersing CARES funding to students

4:34 PM CT, May 1

Memphis’ Rhodes College received about $603,000 in Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding to directly support students with significant financial challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

In total, 586 students will receive automatic distributions; no application is required.

The college announced that it would prioritize students with greatest demonstrated need. Each recipient must have a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) on file with Rhodes’ financial aid office and have received financial aid during spring 2020.

Rhodes is designating the remaining CARES Act funding for students who have unexpected expenses or hardship because of the pandemic. Students can submit a request for emergency financial aid funds. 

Students who receive for the automatic distributions can also apply for the additional emergency financial aid. 

In addition to the CARES Act funding, Rhodes has also established an Emergency Assistance Fund for those who have had a change in financial circumstances due to the pandemic. 


State releases guidelines for houses of worship

3:03 PM CT, May 1

The Governor’s Office of Faith-Based and Community Initiatives released guidance for faith communities on gathering together in houses of worship.

“Tennessee’s faith leaders have been incredibly innovative in finding alternative ways to worship that incorporate social distancing so they can continue to provide spiritual guidance, fellowship, and service to their neighbors during these challenging times,” said Tennessee Governor Bill Lee. “Religious liberty is important and must be protected, and that’s why the State has always deemed religious services as essential gatherings throughout this pandemic. As we look to reopen our economy in a safe fashion, the decision on in-person gatherings will be up to each individual faith community. We’re confident in their ability to determine the proper time and how to incorporate these guidelines to worship in a way that protects the health of their congregation.”

The full guidelines include:

  • A phased approach to resuming in-person gatherings is recommended. Vulnerable populations (everyone 65 years and older, people with disabilities, people with serious respiratory or cardiovascular conditions, people who are immunocompromised, and others) and children’s activities/nursery programs should not gather in person until a later time.
  • Consider solutions to minimize close personal contact that may be part of your services, such as handshakes or sharing food and drink.
  • As the phased approach begins, limit the size of attendance in your sanctuary and other confined spaces to create seating arrangements that provide at least 6-foot distancing between families. It is recommended not to exceed 50% of maximum capacity of the room and should enable full compliance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations for social distancing and hygiene.  
  • Wear face coverings.
  • Encourage members of the community to stay at home if they are symptomatic, have a fever, have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive, or have traveled internationally or to a domestic hot spot in the past two weeks. 
  • If a member of the congregation has tested positive for COVID-19, consult CDC guidelines and local health department recommendations to determine whether in-person gatherings should cease immediately, the building should close for additional cleaning, or other protocol changes are required.



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