New data reveals hopeful trends for the safety of residents in long-term care facilities, according to the most recent report from the Saint Louis County Department of Public Health.
New COVID-19 infections among this population are steadily declining and the number of deaths reported was the lowest since fall of 2020. Those living in nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and other group care settings have been among the most vulnerable during the COVID-19 pandemic.
In January, 410 long-term care facility residents were diagnosed with COVID-19, and 40 of these individuals died. While these numbers still reflect an ongoing crisis within care facilities, they also represent a sharp decline from December, when 963 residents were infected and 178 died. The spread of COVID-19 in long-term care facilities peaked in November 2020, when more than 1,100 infections were reported. Deaths in these facilities were highest in May of 2020 and have fluctuated in the intervening months. More detailed figures can be found here<https://home.house.mo.gov/+CSCO+0h75676763663A2F2F686579717273726166722E70627A++/v3/__https://stlcorona.com/resources/covid-19-statistics/archived-covid-19-reports/archived-ltc-facilities-reports/covid-19-lt-care-01-2021/__;!!GSPrPlUsyzuLXQ!6fS11G_Rxg_NvOeVR1kZT8HnzDMCsLQ18hk4ZKzppKcUGcDb_qc0q-0hgdZ_ajzpz9tz$>.
People living in these settings are in close contact with others and often have underlying health conditions, meaning that both the spread of COVID-19 and the fatality rate of those infections is much higher than the county average. To date, care facility residents account for 6.4% of all infections in Saint Louis County and 54.5% of all deaths. January data suggests that the fatality rate among this group may be declining from the 17% reported since the beginning of the pandemic.
Long-term care residents are in the top priority tier for vaccinations and the effort is under way to ensure that everyone in this group is vaccinated. For more information on the County’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, visit stlcorona.com.
Vaccine Site Reminder
Please remember that at no time will walk-ins be permitted at any of the five DPH Vaccine distribution sites. Those who are pre-registered with DPH will be contacted when an appointment is available. Please do not call the firehouses directly. Pre-registration can be done by visiting www.stlcorona.com<https://home.house.mo.gov/+CSCO+0h75676763663A2F2F686579717273726166722E70627A++/v3/__http://www.stlcorona.com__;!!GSPrPlUsyzuLXQ!6fS11G_Rxg_NvOeVR1kZT8HnzDMCsLQ18hk4ZKzppKcUGcDb_qc0q-0hgdZ_akP4sjJr$> or by sending an email to DPHCovidVaccine@stlouisco.com<mailto:DPHCovidVaccine@stlouisco.com>. We ask that only those who do not have email or access to the internet call our hotline at 314-615-2660 to schedule an appointment. Calls may be made between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m., but our staff and volunteers have been overwhelmed with calls. Please urge your viewers and readers NOT to call merely to check on the status of a registration. All who have registered should expect to receive an email within a week or two of registering.
Live shots, stands ups and outside video are permitted all 5 vaccine sites. However please contact Christopher Ave or Sara Dayley if you plan to be on site for situational awareness across the entire team. No interviews are to be conducted on site except by prior arrangement through DPH.
Public Information Officer
Saint Louis County Department of Public Health
O: (314) 615-5090