MSDH to release names of LTC facilities with COVID-19 outbreaks

MSDH to release names of LTC facilities with COVID-19 outbreaks
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JACKSON, Miss. (WTOK) - The Mississippi State Department of Health will begin publishing the names of long-term care facilities which have outbreaks of COVID-19, after a court ruling and a recommendation from the state attorney general.

A recent ruling in Hinds County Chancery Court called for the disclosure in the public interest. That information has been withheld, citing patient privacy.

Beginning Wednesday, the names of the facilities and the county in which they're located will be posted on the MSDH website and updated daily. The number of cases in each facility will not be made public.

The Mississippi Public Records Act provides for the release of public documents already in existence, such as the list of LTC facilities with COVID-19 outbreaks. Information requests for facility-specific data will have to be addressed at a later time.

The MSDH says it can’t spare staff to answer such questions as it’s “focusing on contact tracing and case investigations.”

The Pine Belt News sought relief after it made a public records requestabout long-term care facilities where outbreaks of the coronavirus have occurred.

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