TUNICA COUNTY, Miss. — A Tunica County woman died after getting coronavirus, the Tunica County COVID-19 Task Force announced on Thursday.
The patient was between the age of 75 and 80 years of age and was staying at a long-term care facility just before her death March 21.
Another patient at the same health care facility tested positive for the virus on March 20, leading to the decision to have the now-deceased woman tested as well. Her test came back positive.
Officials haven't named the facility involved, but a family member of a person living at the Tunica County Health and Rehab Center on Highway 61 said they were told about the two patients.
The person asked to remain anonymous for privacy reasons but said they were notified Wednesday there was a second case, but the nurses never mentioned a death.
"Why wouldn't that be something they wouldn't let everybody who has family there know?" they said.
That family member said the facility no longer allows visitors, and getting in contact with their loved one has been difficult.
"I was told they're no longer letting them use the phone to protect the residents, but I don't understand why that would be a problem," they said. "Why not just sanitize it?"
The family member also said they were unsure if any of the patients have been tested for COVID-19 since they were told residents won't be tested unless they show symptoms.
The task force has been in contact with the health care facility to address their current procedures in order to keep other patients safe.
"I mean I understand doing all you can, but do all you can and try to do more because those are people's loved ones, and people love their families," the family member said.
Mississippi has reported 377 cases of coronavirus across the state as of Wednesday evening, including five deaths. Desoto County has 36 total cases.
WEEG tried to contact the facility Thursday, but they never responded.