Crawford County sees jump in COVID cases

    COVID cases are again on the rise and Crawford County is showing the increase, too. Forty new cases were confirmed in the week ending July 23, more than almost the entire month of June. More than 100 new confirmed cases have been reported since the end of last month.


    According to the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) website that tracks the illness, as of July 25, the total confirmed cases had climbed to 2,451–an increase of 111 in less than a month’s time. Probable antigen cases now total 342.
    That is a substantial increase from last month when there were just 31 new confirmed cases reported between May 31 and June 29. As of May 31, the state website had reported a total of 2,309 confirmed PCR cases to date in Crawford County, along with a total of 314 probable antigen cases. On June 29, the total confirmed cases stood at 2,340 and 331 probable antigen cases reported to date.
    The 40 new cases reported between July 17 and 23 is much higher than six confirmed cases reported between June 21 and 27 and the eight new cases reported for the week between May 23 and 29.
    The county’s seven-day positivity rate using the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) method has jumped to 18.1 percent, well above the 10 percent that is considered high. That number stood at 4.0 percent on June 29, nearly the same as it was at the end of May, when it was at 4.2 percent.
    The total death count in Crawford County increased by one since June 29, now at 41 total confirmed COVID-related deaths overall.  
    County residents have now had a total of 22,339 PCR tests conducted, compared to 21,563 last month, and 8,608 antigen tests, compared to 7,742.
    The percentage of Crawford County residents who’ve completed the vaccine regimen is barely inching upward. As of July 25, just 22.6 percent of the population has completed vaccination. As of June 29, that number stood at 21.4 percent, and on May 31, it was at 19.3 percent. Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses per person.
    On July 19, The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) provided a situational summary regarding the increases in COVID-19 cases across Missouri, marking Phelps County, along with Laclede and Pulaski counties, as COVID-19 hotspots. Active COVID cases in Phelps County stood at just 12 the first week of June but have increased to 360 as of last Friday.
    “In recent weeks, broad regions of Missouri, including north central and southwest Missouri, have experienced a surge in COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations, the so-called Delta variant, which spreads more easily and poses higher risk of hospitalization that prior strains, is believed to be contributing to this increase,” the DHSS statement read. “The DHSS is creating hotspot advisories in partnership with the Missouri Chamber of Commerce and Industry for counties across the state to give insight to community leaders to help overcome vaccine hesitancy and encourage community members getting vaccinated. Getting vaccinated is the best way to control the spread of this disease.”
    The Crawford County Health Department (CCHD) recommends the state-maintained dashboard as the best source of data related to COVID-19. Although the state website’s reported information is somewhat delayed, it provides in-depth information and has a team of experts ensuring the best and most accurate data possible is reported. The website can be found at https://showmestrong.mo.gov/public-health/ and numbers are found under the “View Public Health Data” tab.