Mississippi’s department of health reported Monday that the state saw almost 5,000 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 over the weekend as the virus surges statewide.

That’s an increase of more than six times the number of new cases — 796 — reported three weeks ago on July 12.

“Delta surge accelerating quickly — please be safe and protect your family,” State Health Officer Dr. Thomas Dobbs tweeted.

The state of around 3 million people has seen almost 350,000 COVID-19 cases since the start of the pandemic. The increase in new cases, predominately the highly contagious delta variant, comes as schools across the state prepare to return to the classroom for the start of classes.