County COVID cases low, new variant could be on the way

The+Affton+School+District+held+a+vaccination+event+for+its+teachers+and+other+staff+members+the+first+day+teachers+were+eligible+for+the+COVID-19+vaccine+Monday%2C+March+15.+Other+school+districts+like+Mehlville+and+Lindbergh+have+also+hosted+events+to+vaccinate+their+staff.+

The Affton School District held a vaccination event for its teachers and other staff members the first day teachers were eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine Monday, March 15. Other school districts like Mehlville and Lindbergh have also hosted events to vaccinate their staff.

By Lucas Irizarry, Staff Reporter

St. Louis County Executive Sam Page announced March 23 that the county is in the “low-risk” category for COVID cases according to the Centers for Disease Control.

The county positivity rate is 3.4 percent and it is seeing around 50 new cases per day.

“We’re hopeful that these numbers remain low, however public health experts across the country …  are closely following a concerning trend in Europe,” Page said.

That trend is a surge in cases related to a new subvariant of Omicron, BA-2. Page said the state has identified the case in Missouri and St. Louis. Trends in Europe have been representative of future trends in the U.S., with both Delta and Omicron appearing in Europe first.

Page said BA-2 is more transmissible than Omicron, but vaccines and prior infection have proved effective against it. In the county 75 percent of people have received at least one vaccine and 63 percent are fully vaccinated.

Information regarding vaccines and tests can be found at https://stlouiscountymo.gov/st-louis-county-departments/public-health/covid-19/.