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Task force identifies 6 ZIP codes with most growth in COVID-19, says virus 'spreading pretty much everywhere'

Dr. Garza said the reproductive rate of the virus was over one throughout the area, meaning the virus is "spreading pretty much everywhere"

ST. LOUIS — Hospitalization data in the St. Louis area decreased Monday, but the task force identified six ZIP codes as hot spots for new cases over the last week.

Dr. Alex Garza, incident commander of the St. Louis Metropolitan Pandemic Task Force, said the 63385 ZIP code in Wentzville saw the most significant increase from week to week. Other ZIP codes mentioned by Dr. Garza were:

  • 63366 in O'Fallon
  • 63376 in St. Peters
  • 63122 in Kirkwood and Shrewsbury
  • 63031 in Florissant

The ZIP codes Dr. Garza mentioned didn't necessarily have the most number of new cases over the last week, but saw the largest increase in cases when compared to the previous week.

Dr. Garza said the reproductive rate of the virus was over one throughout the area, meaning the virus is spreading pretty much everywhere.

Credit: Task Force

"This clearly shows that transmission is occurring throughout the metropolitan area. If it's urban, suburban, rural doesn't really matter," he said. "Cases are spreading pretty much everywhere now."

Despite increasing case numbers, task force reported 24 new COVID-19 admissions, the lowest number in more than a week. The seven-day rolling average of new admissions dipped back below 40, which Dr. Garza said was a positive sign.

On Monday, most of the data tracked by the task force decreased:

  • New hospital admissions (data lagged two days) decreased – from 36 yesterday to 24 today. 
  • The seven-day moving average of hospital admissions (data lagged two days) decreased – from 40 yesterday to 38 today.
  • The seven-day moving average of hospitalizations decreased – from 246 yesterday to 245 today. 
  • Inpatient confirmed COVID positive hospitalizations increased - from 240 yesterday to 253 today. 
  • Inpatient suspected COVID positive hospitalizations decreased – from 97 yesterday to 94 today.
  • The number of confirmed COVID positive patients in the ICUs decreased, from 59 yesterday to 54 today.
  • The number of confirmed COVID positive patients on ventilators remained the same at 28 for the third day in a row.
  • Across the system hospitals, 28 COVID-19 patients were discharged yesterday, bringing the cumulative number of COVID-19 patients discharged to 3,698.
Credit: Pandemic Task Force

St. Louis County Executive Sam Page announced new restrictions Monday aimed at slowing the spread of COVID-19, including limiting gatherings to no more than 50 people, limiting business occupancy to 25% and prohibiting bars from serving customers past 10 p.m.

RELATED: Bars, businesses and crowds: Here are St. Louis County's new restrictions

And there will be new processes to close businesses that are not in compliance.

"If businesses are not playing by the rules, they should not be open," Page said during a news conference Monday morning. 

The restrictions will take effect Friday, July 31 at 5 p.m.

In a press release, task force leader Dr. Alex Garza supported the new restrictions. 

“All of the COVID metrics are moving at a concerning and unsustainable rate, including increasing cases, percent positives of testing, and hospital admissions. We must act now to avoid further spread, hospitalizations and deaths which typically follow rapid increases in cases”, said Dr. Garza. “We must take these steps if we want to flatten the curve, get our kids back playing sports and in school full-time, as well as keep everyone safe and healthy.”

St. Louis County reported 297 new cases Monday, bringing the county's total to 11,507. The County also reported four new deaths, bringing the total number of deaths to 636.

Credit: KSDK

The St. Charles County Health Department reported a total of 3,183 total COVID-19 cases in the county, a single-day record of 185 new cases. The department also reported four new deaths, bringing the total to 90.

Credit: KSDK

There were 72 new COVID-19 cases and one new death reported in St. Louis, bringing the city's total to 3,953 cases and 165 deaths.

Credit: KSDK

On Monday, the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services reported more than 1,000 new cases for the seventh consecutive day.

The department reported a total of 43,050 cases and 1,201 deaths, an increase of 1,123 cases and four deaths.

Monday's increase in cases was 95 fewer than the previous day (1,218 but is more than double last Monday's increase of 530).

The state reported 14,953 new polymerase chain reaction, or PCR, tests in the last 24 hours, bringing the state's total to 641,904. PCR tests are the swab tests that look for active infection in people. The state's positivity rate increased for the seventh consecutive day Monday, from 6.69% to 6.71%.

Credit: KSDK
Credit: KSDK
Credit: KSDK

Statewide hospitalization data has not been updated on the DHSS dashboard for more than a week.  A note from the Missouri DHSS said the delay is due to a change in the way hospital data is reported nationwide.

RELATED: White House tells hospitals to bypass CDC on COVID-19 reporting