COVID-19 Update 3-27-2020

St. Louis County Department of Public Health COVID-19 Update

March 27, 2020                          

As of 12:00 AM on 3/27/2020, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • Two deaths.
  • 221 total positive cases, an increase of 78 new positive cases from yesterday’s 143.
  • The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 347 calls on 3/26/2020. This is a slight decrease from the 368 calls fielded on 3/25/2020.  

We acknowledge that although the laboratory test is becoming more broadly available, there are limitations in our public health and healthcare systems’ capacity to obtain samples from people as rapidly as we would like. The healthcare community is working together to assure equitable access to COVID-19 testing resources in the St. Louis region.

We are evaluating the possibility of providing this media advisory earlier in the day. The reporting process(es) involved at the State and local levels are not always consistent. This results in differing numbers at differing times and ultimately confusion. We acknowledge this and are working the best we possibly can under the circumstances.

Elderly: Some of the Most Vulnerable for Different Reasons

High Risk – Those 60 years of age and older are in the “high risk” category for COVID-19. It is recommended that they:

  • Cancel any and all non-essential travel.
  • Have plenty of nonperishable foods and household goods on hand.
  • Identify a friend or family member who can run errands. (Call 211 for assistance from the United Way.)
  • Make a back-up plan for caretakers in the event they get sick.
  • Be aware of their emotional health.
  • Stay in touch with loved ones by phone and email.
  • Visit cdc.gov for more safety tips.

Criminal Activity – Schemes on vulnerable populations, including the elderly, have the potential to rise as this pandemic continues. Fake promises of protective medical equipment, stories of grandchildren needing immediate money for healthcare, and false charities claiming to help the coronavirus response are all examples of these frauds.

Other known COVID-19 scams could include:

  • Investment scams, “get rich” or “recover your money” quick schemes.
  • Romance scams, particularly with the increased use of on-line dating services.
  • Phishing emails, texts or phone calls, claiming to be from government or helping agencies.
  • Inflated or false funeral pricing or scams relating to debts of deceased individuals.
  • Fraudulent COVID related services.

Residents are encouraged to never allow someone to pressure them in to making an immediate decision about money. Take the time necessary to research the company or cause to make certain they are a reputable organization and talk to a trusted friend or family member before making these financial decisions.

If you know of a COVID‐19 scam or price gouging, please alert the Missouri Attorney General’s Office Consumer Protection Hotline at 1-800-392-8222. If you are aware of an older or disabled adult who may be subject to bullying, abuse, neglect or exploitation, call the Missouri Adult Abuse Hotline at 1-800-392-0210.

The St. Louis County Police Department also stands ready to serve. Please contact the Bureau of Communications or your local precinct.

Donations of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Needed:

Due to the national and global span of the current pandemic, the supply of personal protective equipment (PPE) is not adequately meeting the demand. Thus, the St. Louis County Police Office of Emergency Management is seeking immediate assistance in gathering PPE.

To be clear, area first responders have PPE at this time. This is a forward-thinking decision that will ensure area first responders have the necessary equipment for the duration of the pandemic.   

If you or your organization is able to provide this equipment, email EOCdonations@stlouisco.com Officials will respond and coordinate pick-up from any location in the area, state, or Midwest region. For the safety of our responders, we cannot currently accept used equipment, food, drink, open packages, or homemade items.

Items currently needed are:

  • Surgical masks
  • Nitrile gloves (latex free)
  • Safety glasses
  • Sanitizing wipes
  • N-95 Masks
  • Medical gowns
  • Goggles
  • Face shields
  • Disposable coveralls
  • Hand sanitizer
  • Booties

Daily Information

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information.

 

March 26, 2020                          

As of 12:00 AM on 3/26/2020, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • Two deaths. Today, DPH received notification of a death of a 80-89 female with chronic medical conditions.
  • 143 total positive cases, an increase of 24 new positive cases from yesterday’s 119.
  • The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 368 calls on 3/25/2020. This is a decrease from the 604 calls fielded on 3/24/2020.  

We acknowledge that although the laboratory test is becoming more broadly available, there are limitations in our public health and healthcare systems’ capacity to obtain samples from people as rapidly as we would like. The healthcare community is working together to assure equitable access to COVID-19 testing resources in the St. Louis region.

Criteria for testing include:

Symptoms consistent with COVID-19 (fever, cough, lower respiratory symptoms)

AND

-Hospitalized/critically ill patients

-People living in congregate settings

-Those at high risk for poorer outcomes including those >60 and people with chronic medical conditions

-Close contact to those with known COVID-19 infection

-Healthcare workers

Testing is focused on those who are the most ill or most at risk in our community because they will benefit most from the testing.

If you are ill, whether you test positive or negative, your healthcare provider’s advice for managing your symptoms will be the same. Currently, anyone with a fever and cough should assume their illness could be COVID-19 and take steps to protect others in the community and household from the disease. If you are sick, you need to stay home and stay away from other people in your home. If you need to go into public to visit a healthcare provider, wear a mask and practice meticulous hand washing.

Testing locations and current screening process information can be found at www.stlcorona.com and:

North County – (314)653-5000, Mid County – (314)747-3000, West County – (314)251-0500, South County – (314)966-9666

Additionally, all SSM Health area hospitals can be reached for testing information at www.ssmhealth.com/covid19.  

Close contact is defined as: (A) being within approximately 6 feet of a COVID-19 case for a prolonged period of time; close contact can occur while caring for, living with, visiting, or sharing a healthcare waiting area or room with a COVID-19 case – or – (B) having direct contact with infectious secretions of a COVID-19 case (e.g., being coughed or sneezed on)

Daily Information

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.​

March 25, 2020                          

Today, as of 5:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • One death.
  • 119 total positive cases, an increase of 22 new positive cases from yesterday’s 97.
  • The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 604 calls on 3/24/2020. This marks a decrease from the 885 calls fielded on 3/23/2020.  

As a reminder, the manner in which the numbers has changed to streamline the process. The practice should bring local health departments to a consistent level of the timing and reporting of the numbers. Furthermore, it is important to understand the statistics provided are not reflective of the epidemic, rather they are reflective of the information now available. 

Risk

It is important to understand that everyone is at risk of contracting COVID-19. This pandemic will affect all people, regardless of age, sex, race, or health conditions. The CDC identified that “the best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus.”

According to the CDC, those at high-risk for severe illness from COVID-19 include:

  • People aged 65 years and older
  • People who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility
  • People who are pregnant should be monitored since they are known to be at risk with severe viral illness. However to date, data on COVID-19 has not shown increased risk
  • Other high-risk conditions could include:
    • People with chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
    • People who have serious heart conditions
    • People who are immune compromised including cancer treatment
    • People of any age with severe obesity or certain underlying medical conditions, particularly if not /well controlled, such as those with diabetes, renal failure, or liver disease might also be at risk

Many conditions can cause a person to be immune compromised, including cancer treatment, bone marrow or organ transplantation, immune deficiencies, poorly controlled HIV or AIDS, and prolonged use of contortionists and other immune weakening medications

Testing Locations and Instructions

Filters are in place to ensure an expedited testing process for those that meet the necessary criteria. Citizens must call prior to arriving at any testing facility. This is to ensure that individuals are filtered to the next step, if any, appropriately. An operator will transfer them to a screener to get authorization for testing and provide further instruction.

Phone numbers are associated with physical location of that citizen. A map attached to this email displays this. Those numbers are:

North County – (314)653-5000

Mid County – (314)747-3000

West County – (314)251-0500

South County – (314)966-9666

Additionally, all SSM Health area hospitals can be reached for testing information at www.ssmhealth.com/covid19.  

These processes are in place to ensure that medical professionals, facilities, and supplies are not inundated and exhausted unnecessarily. Furthermore, it reduces the time and manner that people that potentially have COVID-19 are in public.

Daily Information

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who ​have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.

March 24, 2020                          

Today, as of 5:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • One death.
  • 97 total positive cases, an increase of seven new positive cases from yesterday’s 90.
  • The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 885 calls on 3/23/2020. This marks a significant increase of the 396 calls fielded on 3/22/2020.  

We should not take solace in the fact that only seven new cases are being reported today. The manner in which the numbers will be reported moving forward is changing to streamline the process. The practice will bring local health departments to a consistent level of the timing and reporting of the numbers. Today, 3/24/2020, should be the first and only day this issue occurs.  

Due to the volume of results now available, the ability to provide data on each positive case has diminished. 

Testing Locations and Instructions

Filters are in place to ensure an expedited testing process for those that meet the necessary criteria. Citizens must call prior to arriving at any testing facility. This is to ensure that individuals are filtered to the next step, if any, appropriately. An operator will transfer them to a screener to get authorization for testing and provide further instruction.

Phone numbers are associated with physical location of that citizen. A map attached to this email displays this. Those numbers are:

North County – (314)653-5000

Mid County – (314)747-3000

West County – (314)251-0500

South County – (314)966-9666

Additionally, all SSM Health area hospitals can be reached for testing information at www.ssmhealth.com/covid19.  

These processes are in place to ensure that medical professionals, facilities, and supplies are not inundated and exhausted unnecessarily. Furthermore, it reduces the time and manner that people that potentially have COVID-19 are in public.

 New Criteria for Testing

 The criteria for testing has changed as a result of this pandemic evolving. The new testing criteria is less focused on travel and more focused on symptoms. This is a consequence of clear evidence of community transmission being present in St. Louis County. The criteria now requires:

  • Close contact of a COVID patient WITH symptoms.
  • High risk (age or underlying medical condition) WITH symptoms.
  • Hospitalized WITH symptoms.

Please note that each of those require symptoms. Again, symptoms are fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

Daily Information

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who ​have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.

 

March 23, 2020                          

Today, as of 5:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • One death.
  • 90 total positive cases, an increase of 35 new positive cases from yesterday’s 55.
  • The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 396 calls on 3/22/2020.

Due to the volume of results now available, the ability to provide data on each positive case has diminished. It is unlikely that we will be able to provide age ranges for those testing positive for COVID-19 on a daily basis with a short turnaround. We are evaluating the most appropriate and realistic way to proceed to continue to provide the public with the best information possible.

Epidemiological investigations indicate there is clear evidence of community transmission in St. Louis County.

Testing Locations and Instructions

Testing facilities are located in North, South, West, and Central St. Louis County. Please know that DPH will work with testing partners to ensure that testing services are available to the uninsured and will further work to address potential cost barriers to such services.

While we cannot disclose the specific locations of those sites at this time due to the facilities being privately run, St. Louis County Department of Public Health’s COVID-19 hotline is available countywide to everyone and anyone. Anyone experiencing symptoms such as fever, shortness of breath, and coughing, should be encouraged to call our hotline at (314)615-2660. Those with general questions regarding COVID-19 should call (877)435-8411.   

St. Louis County to Enact Stay at Home Orders to Prevent Spread of COVID-19

 County Executive Dr. Sam Page announced on March 21, 2020, that St. Louis County and the City of St. Louis will be adopting new restrictions to reduce the spread of COVID-19 in the region. The new restrictions took effect on Monday, March 23, 2020, at 12:01 AM and will end on April 22, 2020, at 11:59 PM. This ensures that residents can meet their basic needs and essential services will still be provided. The restrictions will require people to stay at home when possible. This announcement will not affect the ability of residents to go to the grocery store, the pharmacy, and take a walk in a public park. The Stay at Home Orders were enacted to prevent the spread of this pandemic.

Daily Information

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who ​have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

 The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.​

March 19, 2020                          

Today, as of 3:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • Ten total positive cases.
  • The following five additional cases confirmed today are still under investigation to determine origin:
  • ​6th Case: 60-69 years old
    • 7th Case: 30-39 years old
    • 8th Case: 50-59 years old
    • 9th Case: 80-89 years old
    • 10th Case: 50-59 years old
  • 38 tests have returned negative results. 
  • The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 652 calls on 3/18/2020.

As anticipated, the ability to provide reliable statistics pertaining to pending tests or tests sent for analysis has significantly diminished. This is an encouraging step as more people are being tested by more health care professionals; however, it has an adverse effect on the accuracy of the numbers. Additionally, the statistics provided are not reflective of the epidemic, rather they are reflective of the information now available.  

As of March 14th, all presumed positive tests will be considered confirmed positive. The Missouri State Laboratory will no longer require presumed positive tests be sent to the Centers for Disease Control for that additional level of confirmation.

Disinfecting Details Regarding COVID-19

  The virus that causes coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is stable for several hours to days in aerosols and on surfaces, according to a new study from National Institutes of Health. The scientists found that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was detectable in aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to 72 hours on plastic and stainless steel. The results provide key information about the stability of SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19 disease, and suggests that people may acquire the virus through the air and after touching contaminated objects.  This testing is considered preliminary at this point and has not been peer reviewed.  This is not meant to invoke fear, but to assist our community in taking every possible precaution in spreading this virus.

Knowledge is power and knowing that information continues to change and this public health crisis evolves. 

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who ​have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

  The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877) 435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.​

March 18, 2020                          

Today, as of 3:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • Five positive cases. The confirmed case today is a 30-40 year old and it is travel related. The nature of the travel, whether domestic or international, is still under investigation.  
  • 32 tests have returned negative results. 
  • The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 648 calls on 3/17/2020.

As anticipated, the ability to provide reliable statistics pertaining to pending tests or tests sent for analysis has significantly diminished. This is an encouraging step as more people are being tested by more health care professionals; however, it has an adverse effect on the accuracy of the numbers. Additionally, the statistics provided are not reflective of the epidemic, rather they are reflective of the information now available.  

As of March 14th, all presumed positive tests will be considered confirmed positive. The Missouri State Laboratory will no longer require presumed positive tests be sent to the Centers for Disease Control for that additional level of confirmation.

Social Distancing – Quarantine – Isolation

  Understanding the differences in social distancing, quarantine, and isolation is vital to the educating the public as we continue to face uncertainty.

Social distancing should be used by those who are not sick when in public or at work. The goal of social distancing is to reduce face-to-face contact and reduce the spread of the disease.

Quarantine should be used by people who may have been exposed but are not sick. The person could have the virus in their body even if they do not have symptoms. They need to stay away from others until they find out definitively.

Isolation is used for people suspected or confirmed to have COVID-19. The goal of this is to keep the person from infecting others.

Please see the attached image created by the St. Louis County Department of Public Health and disseminate the image as you see appropriate.  

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who ​have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877) 435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.​

March 17, 2020 

As of 3:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • 11 tests with pending results. 
  • Three tests were sent 3/16/2020 and six thus far on 3/17/2020.
  • 27 tests have returned negative results. 
  • Three positive cases (3/7/2020, 3/13/2020, 3/16/2020).

Please note that these tests only reflect those conducted at the State Public Health Laboratory. The availability and accessibility of commercial labs has and will continue to affect the reliability of the actual numbers. 

As of March 14th, all presumed positive tests will be considered confirmed positive. The Missouri State Laboratory will no longer require presumed positive tests be sent to the Centers for Disease Control for that additional level of confirmation.

The St. Louis County Department of Health fielded a total of 695 calls on 3/16/2020.

  ​Coping with Social Distancing 

 The constant media coverage of the outbreak of COVID-19 may be stressful for people. Fear and anxiety about an infectious disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children.  Successfully coping with stress in a healthy way will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations. Healthy alternatives to help cope with this stress while still practicing social distancing include the following:

  • ​​Maintain a routine.  Try to maintain a regular meal and sleep schedule while practicing social distancing. The regular schedule can help to reduce stress and fear of the unknown.
  • ​​Go for a walk or exercise at home.  Try to go out into nature as much as possible for the benefits of Vitamin D (sunlight). If you cannot get out of the house, most streaming services offer exercise and yoga classes. 
  • Do not indulge in binging.  Binging in eating, alcohol or drug use and even television and oversleeping are all unhealthy habits. 
  • We can all use this time to do some spring cleaning and decluttering.  On top of increasing anxiety, household clutter can harbor infections, pollutants, and create unhygienic spaces. 
  • Be a better friend/relative.  Take the time to run through your contacts and reach out to those people that you haven’t spoken to in a while.  Offer to help out a friend or neighbor who may be less mobile.  Pick up groceries or needed prescriptions. 
  • ​​Learn something new.  Take an online class, research a topic that interests you, or watch “how-to” or “DIY” videos for the project that you have been meaning to finish. 

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who ​have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877) 435-8411.​

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.​

March 16, 2020 

Today, as of 3:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • 14 tests with pending results. 
  • Four tests were sent 3/15/2020 and three thus far on 3/16/2020. 
  • 19 tests have returned negative results. 
  • Two positive cases, one reported on 3/7/2020 and one reported on 3/13/2020.

Please note that these tests only reflect those conducted at the State Public Health Laboratory. The availability and accessibility of commercial labs has and will continue to affect the reliability of the actual numbers.

As of March 14th, all presumed positive tests will be considered confirmed positive. The Missouri State Laboratory will no longer require presumed positive tests be sent to the Centers for Disease Control for that additional level of confirmation.  ​

Mental Health: Managing Anxiety and Stress

The outbreak of COVID-19 may be stressful for people. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions in adults and children. Coping with stress will make you, the people you care about, and your community stronger. Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations. 

Stress during an infectious disease outbreak can include:

  • Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones
  • Changes in sleep or eating patterns
  • Difficulty sleeping or concentrating
  • Worsening of chronic health problems
  • Increased use of alcohol, tobacco, or other drugs

There are many things you can do to support your child during this time, as they may be influenced by inaccurate or false information.

  • Take time to talk with your child or teen about the COVID-19 outbreak. Answer questions and share facts about COVID-19 in a way that your child or teen can understand.
  • Reassure your child or teen that they are safe. Let them know it is ok if they feel upset. Share with them how you deal with your own stress so that they can learn how to cope from you.
  • Limit your family’s exposure to news coverage of the event, including social media. Children may misinterpret what they hear and can be frightened about something they do not understand.
  • Try to keep up with regular routines and with schools closed, create a schedule for learning activities and relaxing or fun activities.
  • Be a role model.  Take breaks, get plenty of sleep, exercise, and eat well. Also, consider connecting with your friends and family members virtually.

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.

St. Louis County has created an email address for the unique needs of COVID-19, stlcorona@stlouisco.com. This is to be used for all COVID-19 requests that would otherwise be sent to the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, the St. Louis County Police Office of Emergency Management, or any of the personnel of those Departments.

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.

March 15, 2020 

Today, as of 3:30 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • 11 tests with pending results. 
  • Two tests sent 3/14/2020 and four thus far on 3/15/2020. 
  • 19 tests have returned negative results. 
  • Two positive cases, one reported on 3/7/2020 and one reported on 3/13/2020.

As of March 14th, all presumed positive tests will be considered confirmed positive. The Missouri State Laboratory will no longer require presumed positive tests be sent to the Centers for Disease Control for that additional level of confirmation.  ​

Think Family First

As this event continues to rapidly evolve, please think family first and consider day to day activities, routines and schedules that may be impacted by significant closures, cancellations or limited activity. The following suggestions are simply to provide additional planning measures that may be needed in the future. 

  • Create a household plan of action in case of illness in the household or disruption of daily activities due to COVID-19 in the community.
  • Consider getting a two-week supply of prescription and over the counter medications, food and other essentials to keep at home. Know how to get food delivered if possible.
  • Establish ways to communicate with others in a virtual capacity (e.g., family, friends, co-workers).
  • Establish plans to telework, what to do about child care needs, and how to adapt to cancellation of events.
  • Know about emergency operations plans for schools/workplaces of household members. 

“It is likely that everyday life will continue to be affected by the challenges presented by COVID-19,” Co-Director Spring Schmidt said. “We believe these difficult, but proactive, decisions will reduce the impact this virus will have on our community and all those in it.” Continue to Practice Social Distancing

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention defines social distancing as “remaining out of congregate settings, avoiding mass gatherings, and maintaining distance (approximately 6 feet or 2 meters) from others when possible.” The main goal of social distancing is to “flatten the curve,” which refers to reducing the peak number of cases at any one time during the outbreak. By flattening the curve through effective public health measures, the number of people simultaneously infected will be much lower than if no measures were taken.

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

  The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877) 435-8411.

St. Louis County email address for unique needs of COVID-19 media inquiries is stlcorona@stlouisco.com. This is to be used for all COVID-19 requests that would otherwise be sent to the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, the St. Louis County Police Office of Emergency Management, or any of the personnel of those Departments.

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.

 

March 14, 2020 

St. Louis County Department of Public Health COVID-19 Update

Today, as of 3:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has:

  • 13 tests with pending results.
  • Ten tests sent 3/13/2020 and two thus far on 3/14/2020.
  • Nine tests have returned negative results.
  • One presumptive positive case was initially reported on 3/13/2020.
  • One positive case confirmed by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) as was initially reported on 3/7/2020.

“As community testing is expected to expand rapidly in the next several days, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health will only be able to reliably provide numbers on presumptive and confirmed cases,” Acting Director Spring Schmidt said. “We will provide more detailed information for as long as the number is an accurate reflection of what is happening in St. Louis County.”

St. Louis County Establishes Technical Specialists Team

St. Louis County is building a team of experts to work closely with the Department of Health to review and draft policies that allow the county to remain at the forefront of fighting the coronavirus. Among those on the new Technical Specialists Team are Rob Gatter, a professor of health management and policy at St. Louis University, and Jason Purnell, an associate professor at the Washington University’s Brown School.

“Our community is filled with tremendous talent. With the coronavirus, we must tap into that talent,” said County Executive Sam Page. “As we continue to assemble this team, I thank each member for devoting their expertise to this public health challenge.”

 Executive Order from Dr. Sam Page

Signed on Friday, March 13, 2020, the Executive Order from Dr. Sam Page is in effect. The order limits the ability to gather 250 people or more in a single space or room.

Section 6 of the Executive Order specifies, “It is further declared unlawful for any person to organize or to attend an intentional gathering of more than 10 individuals of high-risk groups as that term may be defined by the Director of the Department of Public Health.”

The Department of Public Health definition of “High-Risk Individuals” includes those who:

-Are over 60 years of age

-Have underlying health conditions including heart disease, lung disease, or diabetes

-Have weakened immune systems

-Are pregnant

The Department of Public Health call center fielded 1,039 calls from 3/9/2020-3/13/2020.

  Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

  For generic COVID-19 questions, please call 2-1-1. The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.

St. Louis County has created an email address to meet the unique needs of COVID-19 media inquiries. That email address is stlcorona@stlouisco.com, which is to be used for all COVID-19 requests that would otherwise be sent to the St. Louis County Department of Health, the St. Louis County Police Office of Emergency Management, or any of the personnel of those Departments.

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.

March 13, 2020 (2nd Notice)

Executive Order from Dr. Sam Page

Effective starting 5 PM on Friday, March 13, 2020

It is hereby declared unlawful for any person to organize or to attend an intentional gathering of 250 people or more in a single space or room. It is further provided that any person who organizes a gather of 249 people or less shall take appropriate action to minimize risk to the greatest extent possible by implementing and enforcing mitigation measures, including but not limited to social distancing, limiting the time period of gatherings, cleaning of all surfaces, and posting of signs. It is further declared unlawful for any person to organize or to attend an intentional gathering of more than 10 individuals of high-risk groups as that term may be defined by the Director of Department of Public Health.  For additional information, please go to https://stlouisco.com/Your-Government/County-Executive/COVID-19.

The St. Louis County Department of Public Health continues to stress preventative actions are required to help slow the spread of COVID-19. This includes limiting large, social interactions and practicing social distancing. Those feeling ill should stay home to protect others in the community.  Social and faith groups remain an important factor of personal health. Staying connected with others in small group or virtual settings will be an important component of withstanding this extended incident.

Other preventative actions include:

–          Washing your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

–          Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.

–          Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

–          Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

The St. Louis County Department of Public Health continues to count the number of tests sent to the State of Missouri Public Health Laboratory. This is a rapidly evolving situation and is highly dependent on external contributors.  Updates will be provided as they become available.

Rsidents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

  For generic COVID-19 questions, there is an additional line now available to take calls, 2-1-1. The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the CDC or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.  

March 13, 2020 

Media Advisory – COVID-19 Contact Information

St. Louis County has created an email address to meet the unique media needs of COVID-19 media inquiries. That email address is Stlcorona@stlouisco.com, which is to be used for all COVID-19 requests that would otherwise be sent to the St. Louis County Department of Health or the St. Louis County Police Office of Emergency Management. (636) 825-9322 remains an accurate phone number for inquiries as well. This requests will be answered as expeditiously and accurately as possible. 

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the Center for Disease Control (CDC) or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.

March 12, 2020 

On 3/12/2020 as of approximately 1:00 PM, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health (DPH) has three test results pending. Nine tests have returned negative results. One case, initially reported on 3/7/2020, has been confirmed positive by the Center for Disease Control (CDC). One sample was sent for testing on Wednesday, March 11, 2020, and two samples were sent today, March 12, 2020. Four people are currently being monitored for travel-related exposure and three people for potential local exposure. 

Please note that St. Louis County is counting the number of tests that we have sent to the State of Missouri Public Health Laboratory. This is a rapidly evolving situation and is highly dependent on external contributors.  We will provide updates as they become available.

Residents experiencing symptoms of fever, cough, and difficulty breathing, should contact the St. Louis County Health Line at (314)615-2660 with their concerns. Those who have reason to believe they have encountered a person infected with COVID-19 should also utilize that number.

The call center has taken over 999 cumulative calls. On Wednesday, March 11, 174 calls were fielded, but that does not include calls that left voicemails. The majority of these calls were requests from healthcare facilities and general information on Coronavirus.

For generic COVID-19 questions, there is an additional line now available to take calls, 2-1-1. The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services hotline can be reached at (877)435-8411.

St. Louis County has created a website dedicated to the dissemination of information relating to COVID-19, www.stlcorona.com. Please visit that website or those belonging to the CDC or the World Health Organization (WHO) for the most current and reputable information available.  

 ***The media line is 636-825-9322.***

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