Mississippi Health Department Warns of Jail Time for Those Who Don’t Quarantine When Positive for COVID-19

Mississippi’s top health official threatened severe fines and jail time for those who don’t isolate upon testing positive for COVID-19.

“All persons residing in Mississippi must immediately home-isolate on first knowledge of infection with COVID-19,” said State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs on Friday.

Dobbs’ order mentions two levels of violations.

  • A refusal to obey a health officer comes with a $500 fine and possibly six months jail time.
  • When a life-threatening disease is involved in a refusal to obey, there is the possibility of a $5,000 fine and up to five years in jail.

The order states that COVID-19 patients must remain in a “residential location” for 10 days without contact with others.

Only seven ICU beds were available in the state as of Thursday.