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Stay focused: The COVID-19 case numbers remain shocking

The daily reports from the Mississippi State Department of Health have become mind-numbing. 

The numbers of those infected by the virus and those so tragically taken from us by the spread of the COVID-19 virus have been a part of our lives for now more than nine months.

Thursday marked the 282nd day since the first case of the virus was first reported in Mississippi. And, in that time, there have been 187,904 cases confirmed. There have also been 4,320 people killed by the virus.

Sadly, now, we have started measuring the daily reports by whether the number of new cases reported is in excess of 2,000. We have reached the point where anything less than 2,000 infected, or less than 50 killed, is a “good day.”

Locally, the current wave of the virus in our community is the worst we have seen. Over the past week, each daily report pushes our active cases, average daily cases and two-week totals to record levels. It’s not a streak we would have hoped for.

As of Thursday, Warren County has reported 456 cases in December, and that is just through the first 17 days of the month. Already December is the second-worst month of the pandemic and is on pace to become the worst by this weekend.

During this pandemic, we have seen 65 of our friends and neighbors lose their life. 

But while we have grown numb to the numbers, we cannot afford to grow tired of the steps needs to somehow curb the spread of the virus. We cannot stop wearing our masks. We cannot stop social distancing. And we cannot stop taking the hygiene measures that have been proven effective against COVID-19.

The numbers these days are disappointing, shocking and should serve as a reminder that the virus in Warren County is as prevalent today as it has even been. 

We have already lost far too many to this virus and will lose more. But, if we do what we are supposed to do and take responsibility for our actions, then there is a brighter day ahead — one where the virus is history.