Coronavirus update: What to know about COVID-19 in St. Louis area

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ST. LOUIS — Concerns over the coronavirus, officially named COVID-19, are growing in the St. Louis area.

5 On Your Side is focusing on giving you facts and not spreading fear. We’ve gathered up the latest information you need to know about the virus in the St. Louis area in this one story, which we’ll continue to update as new information comes in.

Coronavirus questions: We’re working to get your questions answered by local health officials. You can see the growing list of questions answers by clicking here. We’re adding new answers every weekday.

We’ve added a newscast at 10 a.m. and 10:30 p.m. each weekday to answer your questions and share the latest updates. We’re dedicated to keeping St. Louis informed and healthy. Take care of yourself and each other and if you have any questions about this health emergency text our team at 314-444-5125.

Coronavirus closures: You also can see the growing list of things that are closed, canceled or changed in the St. Louis area by clicking here.

Follow our latest coronavirus coverage at and on the 5 On Your Side app.

Latest Coronavirus Headlines:

Helpful Links

Cases in Missouri:

Missouri now has eight deaths and 370 confirmed cases of coronavirus as of March 25. The number of cases continues to increase rapidly as the testing becomes more streamlined. Wednesday saw the largest single-day jump so far, with the state reporting 356 cases Wednesday afternoon. St. Louis city, St. Charles County and Jefferson County confirmed increases later in the day, bringing the state’s total to 370.

How COVID-19 is affecting our area

St. Louis County

Of the state’s cases, 129 are in St. Louis County, state’s numbers said Wednesday. 

St. Louis County saw a 29-case increase from Tuesday.

St. Louis County has one COVID-19 related death: Judy Wilson-Griffin.

While Judy Wilson-Griffin is the first person to die from the coronavirus in the St. Louis area, she will always be remembered as a beloved healthcare worker. Wilson-Griffin worked at SSM Health St. Mary’s Hospital, SSM Health confirmed with 5 On Your Side Friday night.

She was in her 60s and tested positive on March 17.

‘A hero in the truest sense’ | St. Louis County woman who died from COVID-19 was beloved healthcare worker

In an effort to curb the spread of COVID-19 St. Louis County issued a stay at home order that started on March 23.

What you need to know about the stay-at-home order issued by St. Louis city and county officials

What is a stay-at-home order?

St. Louis

The City of St. Louis now has 53 cases, including its first death, as of March 25. The city has 21 test results pending and 146 people are being monitored.

The woman who died is 31-year-old Jazmond Dixon. Last Tuesday, she went to an urgent care location, which sent her to the hospital for treatment. Two days later, she was on a ventilator. Three days after that, on Sunday, she passed away, a family member told 5 On Your Side. They said she did not have any underlying health issues. Her case was not travel-related.

‘We are only standing by the grace of God’ | 31-year-old woman is St. Louis’ first COVID-19 death

Two employees with Saint Louis Public Schools tested positive for COVID-19, the school district confirmed Wednesday. All families from each of the two schools were notified with a robocall. The staff members were not believed to have been at any district building since spring break and the school believes the risk of transmission is low, said SLPS Director of Communications Meredith Pierce. SLPS did not say where the teachers live.

2 Saint Louis Public Schools employees test positive for coronavirus

One of the city residents with coronavirus is a medical professional who works at BJC HealthCare, multiple sources confirmed with 5 On Your Side last Wednesday. Washington University then later confirmed that two of its doctors tested positive — one is a resident of the city and the other is a resident of the county. Washington University doctors work in the BJC HealthCare system.

St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson tweeted that there is reason to believe there is “community exposure” stemming from the confirmed case because the patient continued to go to work while exhibiting symptoms.

St. Louis also has a stay-at-home order in place until April 22.

St. Charles County

St. Charles County has 18 cases as of Wednesday, including one death. The county is monitoring 580 people.

A man in his 70s died after being hospitalized for COVID-19.

St. Charles County man in his 70s dies from COVID-19

St. Charles County Executive Steve Ehlmann released guidelines requiring non-essential businesses to close and for residents to stay at home as much as possible.

St. Charles County issues new restrictions requiring people to stay at home to curb COVID-19 spread

On Wednesday, the county’s health department reported that three residents of a senior living facility tested positive for COVID-19. Two of the people were hospitalized and the third was in quarantine. 

3 residents of St. Charles senior facility test positive for COVID-19

Jefferson County

Jefferson County has seven cases as of Wednesday evening, according to the county health department. The new cases on Wednesday included a man in his 50s, a woman in her 20s and a woman in her 30s. Two of the cases were travel-related and the third is under investigation.

‘Female between 10-20 years of age’ in Jefferson County tests positive for COVID-19

The county executive and health director issued a stay-at-home order for the county Monday afternoon.

Jefferson County issues stay-at-home order due to coronavirus concerns

Franklin County

Franklin County was up to four cases as of Tuesday afternoon. 

The Franklin County Health Department is expecting to see more cases as the virus spreads throughout the St. Louis area.

“We want to again remind the public that we can all do our part to limit the spread of illness by following public health guidance on social distancing, washing hands frequently, disinfecting commonly touched surfaces and staying home while sick,” Brinker said.

Also Tuesday, dine-in options in Franklin County were suspended until April 17.

Restaurants and bars will only be allowed to have carryout, curbside pick up or delivery options.

The county also closed places of public accommodation such as golf courses, movie theaters and gyms.

Franklin County confirms 4 coronavirus cases

The impact on other Missouri counties in the St. Louis area has been limited.

You can see a county-by-county breakdown with the interactive map below.

Note: Numbers for local counties come from the local health departments and may not reflect the state’s numbers.

The age breakdowns for the cases listed on the state’s website are as follows:

  • Under 20: 10
  • 20-29: 73
  • 30-39: 52
  • 40-49: 43
  • 50-59: 69
  • 60-69: 59
  • 70+: 50

Cases in Illinois: 

On March 26, Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker announced the state had 673 new cases and seven additional deaths, bringing the total to 2,538 cases and 26 deaths.

Patients have ranged in age from younger than 1 to 99 years old, the Illinois Department of Public Health said.

Most of the cases and deaths have been in the Chicago area.

IDPH said the number of COVID-19 cases being reported is rising quickly partly because testing is becoming easier, but also because the virus is spreading across communities.

How COVID-19 is affecting our area

The state has issued a disaster proclamation. Gov. Pritzker called the proclamation an “operational procedure” that opens up Illinois to receive more state and federal resources and tools in how it handles coronavirus cases. The proclamation also would allow Illinois to be eligible to receive federal reimbursement.

On March 25, Gov. Pritzker announced the state would delay its tax filing date to July 15, which is the same date the federal tax deadline was moved to. He also announced two new loan programs for small businesses.

On March 26, Gov. Pritzker announced that 450 former medical professionals have submitted applications to come back to work to support the state’s coronavirus response.

He also announced a new initiative, Illinois COVID-19 Response Fund, that will support nonprofits across the state. Gov. Pritzker said about $23 million has been raised for the fund so far. If you’d like to donate to the fund, click here.

Metro East

In the Metro East, there are cases in the following counties:

  • Clinton: 4
  • Madison: 3
  • Monroe: 2
  • St. Clair: 10
  • Washington: 1

On March 25, St. Clair County announced an increase in testing and some new measures to keep residents healthy.

‘The citizens are taking this very seriously’ | St. Clair County increasing testing, preventative measures

Illinois coronavirus | 250 new cases, 4 additional deaths

COVID-19 numbers limited in Metro East as state numbers continue to grow

Details about the Metro East patients are limited.

Cases in the U.S.: 

There are more than 65,000 confirmed cases in the U.S. as of March 25, according to an interactive map provided by the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering. That’s the third-most of any country.

The number of people who’ve died from the virus in America rose to 737 people as of March 25, according to the CDC.

WATCH: What does flattening the curve mean?

Attempts to help the economy in response to the coronavirus have been mixed.

Pres. Trump signed an $8.3 billion measure to help tackle the coronavirus outbreak in the U.S. The legislation will pay for a multifaceted attack on a virus, known as COVID-19, that is spreading more widely every day, sending financial markets spiraling, disrupting travel and potentially threatening the U.S. economy’s decade-long expansion.

You can see a state-by-state breakdown of funds by clicking here.

READ MORE: Trump signs $8.3B bill to combat coronavirus outbreak in US

In recent days, however, Congress has struggled to advance major economic bills that would help rescue the economy. On Tuesday, however, the stock market had one of its best days ever as both sides said they were nearing a deal on a massive aid bill.

RELATED: Dow surges as Congress readies coronavirus aid package

Cases around the world: 

More than 414,000 people around the world have been sickened by the virus, according to the latest update from the World Health Organization, and more than 18,400 deaths have been reported as of March 25.

China has the most cases of any company, according to the interactive map shown below from Hopkins, followed by Italy, the United States, Spain, Germany and Iran. The map tracks the numbers in real-time.

The CDC has given Warning Level 3 travel notices for dozens of countries, including many in a blanket warning for Europe. A Level 3 warning means all nonessential travel to these areas should be avoided. Besides the countries listed below, the CDC is advising against cruise ship travel worldwide.

Frequently asked questions:

What is a coronavirus?

According to the World Health Organization, coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that cause illnesses ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases including Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

According to the CDC, patients diagnosed with this coronavirus experience a mild to severe respiratory illness. Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Patients with severe complications from the virus often develop pneumonia in both lungs.

How does the virus spread?

The virus is spread person-to-person. According to the CDC, spread is happening mainly between people who are in close contact (within 6 feet) of each other via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes. The droplets land on the noses and mouths of other people, who then inhale them.

The CDC says it may be possible for the virus to spread by touching a surface or object with the virus and then a person touching their mouth, nose or eyes, but this is not thought to be the main method of spread. As the virus was discovered just a few months ago, more research is required to learn more about the spread pattern of the virus.

How do I protect myself and others?

There is currently no vaccine to prevent COVID-19 or medication to directly treat COVID-19. Therefore, the best way to protect yourself is to avoid being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19. The CDC recommends maintaining personal preventative actions such as:

  • Avoiding close contact with those who are sick
  • Not touching your eyes, mouth or nose, especially with unwashed hands
  • Washing your hands often with soap and warm water for last least 20 seconds
  • Clean and disinfect objects and surfaces that are frequently touched
  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue

There also is no need for members of the general public to wear surgical masks to guard against coronavirus. Individuals should only wear a mask if a healthcare professional recommends it.

Is there a cure for the virus?

There is currently no vaccine to protect against COVID-19. Once infected, there is not an antiviral treatment available for COVID-19. People should take care to avoid being exposed to the virus and seek medical care to relieve symptoms if infected with the virus.

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Editor is St Louis Media, LLC (STLM). STLM is a web hosting, design, SEO, press release distribution company and news agency located in St. Louis, Missouri. We own and operate multiple news sites in the region. Our objective with is to offer readers a one-stop news site for Missouri news. We aggregate news from news media across the state. We do not aggregate news from all sources. We pick from those that offer RSS feeds and pick the best with eliminating those that might produce the same news stories, written differently.
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