St. Louis area sees uptick in COVID-19 hospitalizations

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ST. LOUIS — For the first time in several weeks, overall COVID-19 cases nationwide are on the rise, and St. Louis County is also experiencing a slight uptick.

The St. Louis Metropolitan Pandemic Task Force confirmed COVID-related hospitalizations in the area increased to 246 on Friday from 240 on Thursday. That number had been flat or inching downward until today.

Health officials said there are a number of reasons for the slight increase. They point to unvaccinated individuals who are more likely to spread the coronavirus.

St. Louis County Executive Dr. Sam Page said more people need to get vaccinated. About 54% of county residents are vaccinated.

“On Tuesday, the task force was starting to express some concern about the slight uptick that we’ve seen, perhaps from waning vaccinations from folks that are ready for their booster, perhaps from people gathering inside and starting to relax a little bit,” said Page.

Page said the county’s number-one priority is keeping children in schools for the remainder of the year. He said he will follow the advice of local health officials, and the county mask mandate will likely stay in place for the rest of the year.

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