South County has highest COVID-19 infection rate in St. Louis


Photo by Erin Achenbach

Mehlville Fire Protection District employee Kelly Pettit administers a Johnson & Johnson vaccine dose at a state-run vaccination event at Bernard Middle School Saturday, April 3.

South County is the new home of the highest COVID-19 infection rates in St. Louis according to County Executive Sam Page.

South County surpassed North County as of last week, Page announced in a media brief Oct. 6. North County has been the focus of most vaccination outreach by the health department in recent months, and its infection rate is now trending down.

As a whole, the county is still in the Centers for Disease Control red zone with an average of 206 cases a day. Page said the highest rates of new cases are occurring in kids who are not old enough to be vaccinated and this shouldn’t come as a surprise.

“The highest rates of new cases are being seen among five to nine-year-olds and 10 to 14 year-olds,” Page said. “That is 36.7 and 37.3 cases per 100,000 per day respectively.”

Currently children 12 and under are not eligible to be vaccinated.

Last week the county gave out 1,200 doses of the vaccine — double the average. Page said the increase is partly due to booster shots and the gift card program the county recently started.