Mississippi State Department of Health

Individuals, communities and organizations are essential to controlling the spread of COVID-19 in Mississippi. The precautions and guidance here can keep you and the state safer and healthier.

Mississippi Coronavirus Hotline (7 days a week, 7 a.m.–7 p.m.): 877-978-6453

Home isolation is mandatory if you have tested positive for COVID-19 by order of the State Health Officer. If you have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19, quarantine is also important to protect others.

MSDH Guidelines for K-12 Reopening During COVID-19: Assessing risk, preventive measures, responding to outbreaks. Document and resources »

NEW: Guide to COVID-19 Prevention and Response in Long-Term Care Facilities.
View this guidance »

Face coverings are required by order of the Governor for all Mississippians in schools, businesses and indoor public spaces, and in outdoor public spaces where consistent social distancing is not possible. Details and exceptions »

Preventing COVID-19: Recommendations and Requirements


Businesses and Re-Opening

Gatherings and Events

Special restrictions for certain counties

Governor's Executive Orders

Prevention for Individuals

Hand sanitizer warning: Hand sanitizers containing methanol are toxic. What to look for »

The precautions and requirements below have been determined by the State Health Officer and the Governor's COVID-19 executive orders.

Protect Yourself and Others

Wear a mask in public places

All Mississippi residents should wear non-medical grade masks or homemade cloth face coverings when shopping, running errands, or otherwise away from home. Face covering is especially important when a distance of at least 6 feet cannot easily be maintained between persons. This recommendation does not include manufactured (surgical) or N95 masks, which should be reserved for healthcare workers and first responders.

Face coverings are now required in certain counties. More information »

Practice Protective Hygiene

Local Testing Providers

Local healthcare providers are now providing sampling and test services at locations across the state for those with COVID-19 symptoms.

Families, Women and Children

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) offer specialized recommendations for:

Older Adults and People at High Risk

People at risk for serious illness from COVID-19 are adults 65 and over, those who are obese, those with a chronic illness such as heart disease, diabetes or lung disease, and anyone receiving treatments which may compromise their immune system. These people should take precautions at all times to limit their exposure to others who may be ill:

Prevention in the Community

New mask and social distancing requirements for selected counties

Based on the Governor's executive orders 1515, 1512, 1509 and 1507, the following counties must practice the enhanced safety protocols below.

  • Bolivar, Calhoun, Carroll, Claiborne, Coahoma, Covington, De Soto, Forrest, Grenada, Harrison, Hinds, Holmes, Humphreys, Jackson, Jefferson, Jones, Lamar, Lee, Leflore, Lowndes, Madison, Montgomery, Noxubee, Panola, Pontotoc, Quitman, Rankin, Sharkey, Simpson, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tate, Walthall, Washington, Wayne, Winston and Yalobusha.

In all types of businesses:

  • All employees are required to keep at least 6 feet from other employees, or wear a face mask.
  • All employees must be screened at the beginning of their shift.
  • Employees in contact with the public must wear a face covering.
  • Members of the public must wear a face covering at all times in a business, except for some circumstances such as eating, or special medical conditions.

Gatherings and events:

  • Social gatherings are limited to 10 individuals indoors and 20 outdoors, and a distance of at least six feet between individuals must be maintained.
  • A distance of six feet or more must be maintained between others at all public events, indoors and out, or else face coverings must be worn.

Schools, businesses, events and other places that people gather should take steps to prevent or limit the spread of viral illness.

Social Gatherings and Events

Everyone attending events and gatherings, including weddings and funerals, should take extra precautions at this time, including:

State Agencies

Businesses and Workplaces

Workplaces should be mindful of providing strong hygiene support and facilitating social distancing for the safety of their employees and patrons. Employees who are sick should stay at home, and employees should be checked daily for COVID-19 symptoms.

Restaurants and bars

Report a restaurant that is not following COVID-19 safety orders: E-mail the details to food@msdh.ms.gov

Long-Term Care Facilities

Visitation to nursing homes and other long-term care facilities is now highly restricted in order to protect residents.


The Mississippi State Department of Health has created guidelines to assist school administrators in re-opening decisions during COVID-19.

Youth Sports

Child Care Facilities

The Mississippi State Department of Health has not recommended closing child care facilities at this time.

Child care faculties choosing to remain open should be mindful of hygiene and disinfection practices specific to schools and daycares:

Church and Worship Services

Like any gathering, church services have the potential to spread COVID-19 infection if they are not resumed with suitable precautions. Guidelines have now been issued to help churches offer in-person services while minimizing the risk of disease transmission.

Funeral Homes and Mortuaries

MSDH has specific guidance for services of this type.

Other Community Guidance

The CDC offers prevention, response and re-opening guidance for:

The CDC has guidance for cleaning rooms and buildings visited by those who have a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19.

Information for Travelers

The CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel (including cruise travel) to all global destinations due to the global pandemic and widespread transmission of COVID-19. All travelers returning from international travel are advised to stay home and self-monitor for symptoms for 14 days after returning home.

You may be contacted by the Mississippi State Department of Health if you have returned from traveling to an area with restrictions on entry to the US, traveled on a cruise, or traveled on a flight or ship with a confirmed COVID-19 case. We'll provide instructions on protective steps to take, including isolation at home.

General Information

COVID-19 is a new respiratory virus that causes flu-like illness ranging from mild to severe, with symptoms of fever, coughing, fatigue and difficulty breathing. Like the flu, COVID-19 spreads person-to-person by close contact (within 6 feet) and by coughing or sneezing. COVID-19 may also spread by touching surfaces contaminated by the virus.

Links referenced
View full size video »    https://vimeo.com/412532260
Safety measures to take »    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,22245,420,878,html
order of the State Health Officer    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/23,10134,386,pdf/COVID-19_SHO_Isolation_Order_080420.pdf
schools    https://www.sos.ms.gov/content/executiveorders/ExecutiveOrders/1517.pdf
State agencies    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,8653,420,pdf/State_agency_COVID-19_guidelines.pdf
Quick guide to COVID-19 executive orders and whom they affect    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,9924,420,pdf/Executive_Orders_Summarized.pdf
All executive orders related to COVID-19    https://governorreeves.ms.gov/covid-19/
What to look for »    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,22206,420,878,html
COVID-19 executive orders    https://governorreeves.ms.gov/covid-19/
Making, wearing and cleaning your own cloth mask    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html
More proper handwashing tips »    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,0,330,html
More about preventing the spread of disease    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/prevention-treatment.html
View local testing providers    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,21912,420,874,html
Home and Family    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/protect-family.html
Pregnancy and Breastfeeding    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,22189,420,878,html
Children    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prepare/children.html
Full recommendations from the CDC for people at high risk    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/high-risk-complications.html
1515, 1512, 1509 and 1507    https://www.sos.ms.gov/Education-Publications/Pages/Executive-Orders.aspx
1515, 1512, 1509 and 1507    https://www.sos.ms.gov/Education-Publications/Pages/Executive-Orders.aspx
Warning: Avoid hand sanitizers containing methanol »    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,22206,420,878,html
1511, 1500, 1492 and 1496    https://www.sos.ms.gov/Education-Publications/Pages/Executive-Orders.aspx
MSDH Guidelines for State Agencies During COVID-19    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,8653,420,pdf/State_agency_COVID-19_guidelines.pdf
Governor's orders 1492 and others on re-opening and safe operation    https://www.sos.ms.gov/Education-Publications/Pages/Executive-Orders.aspx
CDC questions and answers on COVID-19 and safety in the workplace    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/general-business-faq.html
CDC guidance for grocery and retail food workers    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/grocery-food-retail-workers.html
CDC Guidance for health protection in workplaces    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/businesses-employers.html
OSHA information on COVID-19 in the workplace    https://www.osha.gov/SLTC/covid-19/
1511, 1509, 1496, 1492 and 1478    https://www.sos.ms.gov/Education-Publications/Pages/Executive-Orders.aspx
COVID-19 Prevention and Response in Long-Term Care Facilities    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,10151,420,pdf/COVID-19_LTCF_Guidance.pdf
See the Governor's executive order 1463 for details    https://www.sos.ms.gov/Education-Publications/Pages/Executive-Orders.aspx
Guidance for School Re-entry from the American Academy of Pediatrics    https://services.aap.org/en/pages/2019-novel-coronavirus-covid-19-infections/clinical-guidance/covid-19-planning-considerations-return-to-in-person-education-in-schools/
CDC Guidance for Schools and Childcare Administrators    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-for-schools.html
1500, 1492, 1491    https://www.sos.ms.gov/Education-Publications/Pages/Executive-Orders.aspx
MSDH Guidelines for Summer Camps and Overnight Camps During COVID-19    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/_static/resources/8662.pdf
CDC Guidance for Schools and Childcare Administrators    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-for-schools.html
CDC Guidance for School and Childcare Settings    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/
Governor's guidelines for resuming in-person worship services    https://governorreeves.ms.gov/wp-content/uploads/Safe-Worship-Guidelines-FINAL.pdf
MSDH Guidance for Funeral Homes and Mortuaries    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,8559,420,pdf/FuneralHomes_COVID19_guidance.pdf
Colleges and universities    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/colleges-universities/index.html
First responders    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/first-responders.html
Households    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/get-your-household-ready-for-COVID-19.html
Homeless shelters    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/homeless-shelters/
People experiencing homelessness    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/homeless-shelters/index.html
Event organizers    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/large-events/
Gatherings and community events    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/large-events/index.html
Community and faith-based organizations    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/
Businesses and workplaces    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/businesses-employers.html
Parks and recreational facilities    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/parks-rec/index.html
re-opening swimming pools and aquatic facilities    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/parks-rec/aquatic-venues.html
Retirement communities and independent living    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/retirement/index.html
School and childcare settings    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/schools-childcare/
Shared and congregate housing    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/shared-congregate-house/index.html
Transportation and delivery    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/transportation/index.html
Tribal Communities    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/tribal/index.html
Healthcare facilities    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/healthcare-facilities/
Schools and childcare administrators    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/specific-groups/guidance-for-schools.html
Flyer: Mitigation Strategies for Communities with Local COVID-19 Transmission (CDC)    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/downloads/community-mitigation-strategy.pdf
Cleaning and disinfection recommendations for schools, offices and other non-healthcare facilities    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/community/organizations/cleaning-disinfection.html
More information for travelers from the CDC    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/
Current COVID-19 Cases in Mississippi    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,0,420,html
Questions and Answers about Coronavirus COVID-19    https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html
Full COVID-19 information from the CDC    https://www.cdc.gov/covid-19/
Handouts: Basic disease prevention, handwashing and more    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,0,420,334,html
Spanish and Vietnamese materials    http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/14,0,420,868,html

Find this page at http://msdh.ms.gov/msdhsite/index.cfm/index.cfm

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