ST. LOUIS– St. Louis County Executive Dr. Sam Page said a ‘tidal wave’ is coming to the unvaccinated residents of the county. He said the Delta Variant is spreading quickly and the variant has the ability to devastate those in its wake.
During a morning briefing, Page said he wishes he had more encouraging news but the numbers were too startling to ignore.
Page said the number of new COVID cases has gone up more than 63% over the last two weeks in St. Louis County and it’s not expected to slow down. The new infections are much higher among populations with low vaccination rates. Page says that includes those living in the inner north part of St. Louis County where the new infection rate is 18.1 cases per 100,000 people. That is 3.5 times higher than the rate not far away in central parts of St. Louis County.
Page also said the infection rates among those in their teens, 20s, and 30s are four to five times higher than those among people who are in their 70s and older.
Countywide, Page explains that the infection rate among Black residents is more than five times the rate among White residents.
“A tidal wave is coming toward our unvaccinated population. This variant is spreading quickly, and this variant has the ability to devastate those in its wake. That’s why it is so critical to get vaccinated now. The vaccines are safe, effective, and free. That goes for everyone 12 and older. Get tested if you experience any cold or flu-like symptoms. Do not assume those symptoms could be a summer allergy,” Page said.
St. Louis County is expected to release a Public Health Advisory Monday encouraging those experiencing cold or flu-like symptoms to get a COVID test.
Page explained the symptoms for the Delta Variants are different than other COVID strains. The symptoms include headaches, a runny nose, and a sore throat.
He said the rapidly rising positivity rate in St. Louis County is an indication that not enough people are being tested.
Page is also recommending people who are vaccinated still get tested if they have these symptoms. He says some may think they are summer allergies but that may not be the case.
He also said the region won’t see the full impact of this wave on mortality for some time. He said officials are hoping that a relatively high positivity rate among older residents will help.
Page is also urging people to wear masks indoors even if they’re vaccinated. If you don’t know the vaccination status of the people around you or if you are in large crowds.
The pandemic is far from over and real dangers still exist.