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Covid spike spreads concern among health officials, city leaders

The current positivity rate is over 14%, up 5 percentage points from last week.

Posted: Dec 7, 2021 9:56 PM
Updated: Dec 8, 2021 9:24 AM

(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) The Northwest Missouri region is seeing a spike in new Covid-19 cases.

Though the news wasn't exactly shocking to health officials, that doesn’t mean they’re not concerned.

The timing of the rise comes in the middle of the Thanksgiving and Christmas holidays, and the dominant strain remains the highly transmissible Delta variant.

The latest information from the St. Joseph Health Department reports 253 new cases in Buchanan county since last Thursday. The current positivity rate is up to 14.55%.

Dr. Davin Turner, CEO of Mosaic Life Care said in a panel discussion with doctors across the region that the positivity rate within the hospital is at 27%. 

Turner also added many hospitalized are those not up to speed on vaccinations.  He said about 25% have received at least one vaccine and none have had a booster."

Vaccination rates remain fairly low in the county, 39% have initiated the vaccine while 36% are fully vaccinated.  

The number is a concern for city leaders as well, St. Joseph Mayor Bill McMurray called the current rate concerning.

Health officials and city leaders remind everyone once again to take the information seriously the consequences go beyond the virus.

"Take the personal responsibility to risk manage this virus so you don’t get it and you don’t spread it to your friends and neighbors," McMurray said.

Health experts expect the spike to continue into the new year, they also say the new omicron variant will likely begin spreading throughout Missouri.

St. Joseph
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Bitter cold temperatures have returned to the area with temperatures in the single digits and wind chills below zero this morning. Temperatures will struggle to warm up today with highs in the 20s under mostly sunny skies. Temperatures will slowly start to warm throughout the rest of the work week as dry weather continues. The weekend looks to be mild and sunny with highs in the 40s.
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