Coronavirus live blog, May 22: Tennessee cases increase by 433

By Updated: May 22, 2020 8:39 PM CT | Published: May 22, 2020 10:25 AM CT

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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
  • Wear a mask when you are out in public
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a disposable tissue or flexed elbow when you cough or sneeze
  • Avoid close contact (within 6 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 22, 2020

COVID-19 in Tennessee

3:47 PM CT, May 22



Mississippi cases rise by 402; deaths by 16

3:06 PM CT, May 22

Mississippi has 402 more coronavirus cases and 16 more deaths resulting from the disease, according to the state’s Department of Health.

Three of the deaths occurred between May 5-12 and were identified through death certificate reports, according to the agency.

The total is now 12,624 confirmed cases and 596 deaths.

DeSoto County has 442 confirmed cases and six deaths. Fifteen cases and two deaths are linked to long-term care facilities.

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Tennessee cases increase by 433

2:21 PM CT, May 22

Tennessee has 433 more coronavirus cases and two more deaths resulting from the disease, according to the state’s Department of Health.

The statewide total is now 19,394 confirmed cases and 315 deaths. In Tennessee, 1,560 people have ever been hospitalized for the disease; 12,566 people are considered officially recovered.

Since yesterday, the number of tests administered increased by 7,587, bringing the total to 368,170.

The Department of Health reports 4,127 confirmed cases and 92 deaths in Shelby County, up from the 4,083 cases and 91 deaths the Shelby County Health Department reported earlier today.

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Testing surges will occur at 201 Poplar, Penal Farm

12:11 PM CT, May 22

On 201 Poplar and corrections center: Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris said detainees “deserve humanity and compassion just like the rest of us.” 

He said the county will continue to expand efforts to make prisons and jails safe. They have organized a COVID testing surge at 201 and will do more. They are planning to do a testing surge at the corrections center June 8 in coordination with the state. All there will be offered a test and will take several days to complete tests. They have already limited access to the corrections center, provided free phone calls, while in lockdown and distributed masks. They will keep protections there for the rest of the year and “as long as it takes.” 

”We have to be aggressive,” Harris said.

He announced the health department expansion moves forward including city and county funding. They are prepared to hire 141 new employees “singularly devoted” to work on COVID-19 and the health department is recruiting. People can apply on the county government website. Positions include admin staff, strike teams, epidemiologists, nurses, data entry.

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Watch today’s COVID-19 Joint Task Force briefing

12:00 PM CT, May 22

Today’s COVID-19 Joint Task Force briefing is scheduled for noon and set to feature Shelby County Mayor Lee Harris and Shelby County Health Department Director Alisa Haushalter.

Watch below:



Shelby County confirms 49 new cases of coronavirus

10:20 AM CT, May 22

The Shelby County Health Department has confirmed 49 new positive cases of COVID-19, according to a Friday morning release.

The total number of cases in Shelby County is now 4,083, resulting in 91 deaths.

Since Thursday, 1,400 new tests have been administered in Shelby County, 24 tests less than the day prior. At a positivity rate of 3.5%, the positivity of new cases has risen slightly from Thursday’s figure of 2%.

The county’s overall positivity rate continues a decline, at 6.87%, as of Friday morning.

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Local and state coronavirus cases, tests and recoveries

10:04 AM CT, May 22



How cases are growing in Shelby County and Tennessee

10:04 AM CT, May 22


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May 21, 2020

Governor boasts of strong coronavirus testing program

3:13 PM CT, May 21

Gov. Bill Lee touted Tennessee’s COVID-19 testing program Thursday, saying the state’s ability to quickly identify positive cases through expanded testing enables people to quarantine quickly.

“This is how we are able to reboot our economy and get people back to work,” the governor said.

Lee pointed out a Harvard study found seven states are testing enough to open their economies and Tennessee was one of them. The state tested 2% of its population in April and 3% in the month of May so far.

Testing has been done in all prisons, veterans homes and is being conducted in all nursing homes, he said.

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Health Dept.: The data is determined by behavior

12:12 PM CT, May 21

Shelby County Health Department health officer Dr. Bruce Randolph opened Thursday’s COVID-19 Joint Task Force briefing by going over numbers. There are 29 new cases, down quite a bit from yesterday. Shelby County tested 1,424 just yesterday.

Sixty-seven percent of confirmed cases have recovered. The health department is still investigating nursing home clusters. Of the 4,034 total cases so far, the agency has identified 6,964 contacts and placed 2,277 people in quarantine.

Randolph encouraged citizens to maintain social distancing.

”Just do the right thing,” he said, realizing that all want to return to normal lives. “The reality is that our decision to move from one phase to another is driven by data. But the data is driven by behavior.”

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