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TUESDAY UPDATES: State of Missouri reports coronavirus cases trend downward

KMIZ ABC 17 News
KMIZ ABC 17 News
 2022-01-25
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The state of Missouri reported 9,390 new and probable coronavirus cases for Monday.

The state of Missouri’s daily average of new coronavirus cases has gone back up to an 8,304 seven-day average (58,126 confirmed cases from the previous week of reporting) as the state reports new coronavirus cases across the state according to state health department reporting. The daily average looks at the last seven days and doesn't account for the past three days, which will push that number even higher.

The state reported 6,722 new coronavirus cases through PCR testing and another 2,668 probable cases identified in antigen testing from Friday, according to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services coronavirus dashboard. Missouri has now reported 1,036,178 confirmed cases for the pandemic and more than 248,862 probable cases.

The state recorded 30 new deaths for 13,902 total and two new probable death was added for a total of 3,168.

Missouri's new cases are down 11.6% over the past week, the state reports, as recent cases surge nationwide.

The rate of positive tests is 35.1% for the last week. A higher positivity suggests higher transmission and that there are likely more people with coronavirus in the community who haven’t been tested yet.

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Source: Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services

Saline (1), Boone (4), Pettis (6), Miller (8), Callaway (10), Cole (11), Osage (12), Moniteau (32) and Camden, (37) counties are all in the top 40 Missouri counties in cases per capita over the last week, according to state statistics.

The state reports that 6.5% (a .54% increase from last Monday) of vaccinated Missourians have developed COVID-19 infections. The state is reporting an increase of 18,356 breakthrough cases to 219,278 breakthrough cases out of 3,375,736 fully vaccinated people. The state has reported 1,053 breakthrough deaths.

Experts continue to tout vaccination as the best tool to fight the wave of new cases.

Still, new vaccinations have effectively stalled in Missouri, with more boosters being given daily than first or second shots. The state reported Thursday that 55% of Missouri residents are fully vaccinated.

COVID-19 hospitalizations are also trending down, with the state reporting 18% of total inpatient capacity and 17% of ICU capacity remaining. Those numbers are at 24% and 28% in Central Missouri, respectively. The state is reporting 3,614 patient hospitalizations. There are currently 693 patients in Missouri ICUs.

All Missouri counties report high community transmission rate in latest Red Zone Report

The newest State Profile Report shows Missouri counties remain at the high transmission level of COVID-19. The report shows a new case rate of 1,387 cases per 100,000 people, a change of 1% from last week.

The report shows Missouri had 85,155 new cases of COVID-19 for the week of Jan. 21.

The report also indicates 188 residents died from the coronavirus, a 30% decrease from the previous week.

All Missouri counties are considered high community transmission.

Missouri_State_Profile_Report_1-21-2022 Download

The report states that 75.3% of Missouri residents 18 years and older have received at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine and 63.9% are considered fully vaccinated. Over 40.7% of residents 18 years and older have received a booster shot.

According to the report, 42.7% of coronavirus cases were identified as the omicron variant and 55.7% were identified as the delta variant.

According to the report, six hospitals are currently dealing with supply shortages or six percent of all hospitals. The report has removed reference to staffing shortages for state hospitals.

Vaccine rates are down with 45,800 people 12 and older initiated getting a vaccination last week, which is 72% higher than the last report. 4,208 people 12-17 initiated vaccines last week, which is 59.2% higher than the last report.

MU researchers identify omicron mutations

A team including University of Missouri researchers has identified more than 40 mutations specific to the omicron variant of the coronavirus.

MU said in a news release that the findings can help explain how the omicron variant is better able to evade immunity from vaccination or previous infection.

The research was led by Kamlendra Singh, a professor in the MU College of Veterinary Medicine. Singh and the other researchers, including Hickman High School student Saathvik Kannan, found 46 mutations specific to omicron, including several in the region of the virus' spike protein where antibodies attach themselves to the virus.

“The purpose of antibodies is to recognize the virus and stop the binding, which prevents infection,” Singh said in a news release. “However, we found many of the mutations in the omicron variant are located right where the antibodies are supposed to bind, so we are showing how the virus continues to evolve in a way that it can potentially escape or evade the existing antibodies, and therefore continue to infect so many people.”

Breakthrough infections -- those in people who are fully vaccinated against the coronavirus -- and reinfections of people who already had the coronavirus have risen as the omicron variant has become the dominant strain. Its ability to evade immunity and spread easily has helped omicron push new cases and hospitalizations to record levels in Missouri and elsewhere.

More than 47% of Missouri's new cases last week were breakthroughs , according to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services. However, studies show that coronavirus vaccines remain effective in preventing serious illness and death from the virus. The state reports 55% of Missourians are fully vaccinated .

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