St. Francois County is on track to set a record for the number of new confirmed COVID-19 cases.
According to the health center, there have been 874 cases through the first two weeks of November. The record is 1,217 in September.
Just two weeks in, November’s numbers are already close to eclipsing October’s 957 cases.
The county is experiencing widespread community transmission, the health center said in an update on Monday.
“Hospitals which serve our citizens both locally and in the metro area are at or near capacity,” the update said. “Our healthcare workers are exhausted. We need to work together to support them as they have supported our community throughout the pandemic.
"Our most vulnerable citizens need our help to slow the spread of the virus as it threatens to overwhelm our healthcare system. Every citizen, business, and organization has a role to play.”
Due to the rapid increase in cases, the department said the capacity to investigate cases in a timely manner is not possible. They are prioritizing cases with healthcare workers, first responders, those who reside or work in congregate facilities, and persons ages 3-21.
As of this week, they will also be moving to weekly case updates. The next update will be on Friday.
The health center is advising the public to do the following:
- If you are sick, stay home and contact your medical provider.
- Avoid socializing in groups larger than 10 or groups that do not allow for proper social distancing.
- Wear face coverings when in public settings.
- When in public, individuals should maximize physical distance from others.
- Vulnerable persons should limit movement in the community to essential services only.
- Continue to practice good hygiene.
Ste. Genevieve County meeting update
The Ste. Genevieve County Health Board of Directors will be hosting a live Facebook meeting at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday to discuss the rise in COVID-19 cases.
MU Extension in Ste. Genevieve County will be helping to stream the meeting, along with getting any questions/concerns to the board from the community, according to the health department.
“We encourage friendly dialogue and questions,” the health department said.
The Madison County Health Department reported two new COVID-related deaths, one on Saturday and one on Monday.
They also reported nine new cases on Monday. The county now has 133 active cases, 774 total cases, and 14 COVID-related deaths.
The Iron County Health Department reported 26 new cases, 14 of those are long-term care facility residents and four are long-term care employees.
There are now 71 active cases and 419 total cases in the county.
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