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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Missouri health officials announced 32 new deaths tied to COVID-19 and more than 1,300 new cases.

According to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, the state has recorded 126,113. cases of SARS-CoV-2—an increase of 1,351 positive cases from the day before—and 2,118 total deaths as of Wednesday, September 30. That’s a case-fatality rate of 1.68 percent.

Please keep in mind that not all cases and deaths recorded since yesterday occurred in the last 24 hours.

On Monday, Sept. 28, Missouri launched a new COVID-19 dashboard and deleted duplicate COVID cases for quality assurance, resulting in a negative number of recorded cases for the day.

For comparative purposes, Missouri’s COVID case-fatality rate was 1.81 percent on August 312.52 percent on July 30, and 4.71 percent at the end of June. In mid-May, the case-fatality rate was 5.5 percent. When COVID-19 was beginning to spread across the state in late March, the case-fatality rate was 1.33 percent.

The 7-day rolling average for cases in Missouri sits at 1,310. Yesterday, the average was at 1,342 cases. Exactly one month ago, the rolling average was 1,226.

Approximately 44.7 percent of all reported cases are for individuals 39 years of age and younger. The state has further broken down the age groups into smaller units. The 18 to 24 age group has 19,861 recorded cases, while 25 to 29-year-olds have 10,442 cases.

Missouri has administered 1,847,369 PCR tests for COVID-19 and 92 percent of those individuals have tested negative. The 7-day moving average of the positivity rate is 14.5 percent. Health officials use the 7 days prior to the current day when determining the rolling average.

According to the state health department’s COVID-19 Dashboard, “A PCR test looks for the viral RNA in the nose, throat, or other areas in the respiratory tract to determine if there is an active infection with SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. A positive PCR test means that the person has an active COVID-19 infection.”

Missouri is now reporting a rolling 7-day average of COVID hospitalizations across the state. As of Sept. 29, that average is 1,139; the state uses the 7 days prior to the current day when determining the rolling average. Since Sept. 17, the rolling average for hospitalizations has been over 1,000.

Approximately 44.1 percent of all recorded deaths in the state are for patients 80 years of age and older.

If you have additional questions about the coronavirus, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services is available at 877-435-8411 (24 hours a day). Beginning October 1, calls will be accepted from 7 a.m. to 9 p.m. seven days a week. A DHSS spokesperson says they receive 93 percent of calls during this timeframe. 

As of September 30, the CDC has identified 7,168,077 cases of COVID-19 and 205,372 deaths across all 50 states and 6 U.S.-affiliated jurisdictions, for a national case-fatality rate of 2.87 percent.

How do COVID deaths compare to other illnesses, like the flu or even the H1N1 pandemics of 1918 and 2009? It’s a common question.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), preliminary data on the 2018-2019 influenza season in the United States shows an estimated 35,520,883 cases and 34,157 deaths; that would mean a case-fatality rate of 0.09 percent. Case-fatality rates on previous seasons are as follows: 0.136 percent (2017-2018), 0.131 percent (2016-2017), 0.096 percent (2015-2016), and 0.17 percent (2014-2015).

The 1918 H1N1 epidemic, commonly referred to as the “Spanish Flu,” is estimated to have infected 29.4 million Americans and claimed 675,000 lives as a result; a case-fatality rate of 2.3 percent. The Spanish Flu claimed greater numbers of young people than typically expected from other influenzas.

Beginning in January 2009, another H1N1 virus—known as the “swine flu”—spread around the globe and was first detected in the US in April of that year. The CDC identified an estimated 60.8 million cases and 12,469 deaths; a 0.021 percent case-fatality rate.