ST. LOUIS – The St. Louis Metropolitan Pandemic Task Force reported 145 new COVID-19 admissions to area hospitals on Monday, the lowest total of new patients since 136 people sought care on Dec. 29, 2021.

It’s only the fourth time in two weeks that less than 200 people were admitted in a single day. The strain of the omicron surge is still being felt in area hospitals, as total patient hospitalizations today reached another all-time high at 1,449 people.

The task force reported 19 new deaths today, bringing the area deaths to 270 people in the new year. The region is now averaging 20 deaths per day in task force hospitals—which are comprised of the SSM, BJC, Mercy, and St. Luke’s health systems. Also today, the task force has begun including hospitalization numbers from the local VA Hospital. There are 42 patients currently hospitalized with COVID at the VA.

In addition to the low admissions data, the task force also reported improvement in its critical care units. The region now has 207 patients in ICU beds, down from 216 people the day before. And 118 patients are getting ventilator care in order to breathe, also down from the 130 people the day prior. Of the 1,402 COVID-positive patients now hospitalized, 499 of them are vaccinated. And 64% of all hospitalizations still involve unvaccinated patients.