SPRINGFIELD, Mo. (KY3) – After several weeks of rising COVID-19 cases over the summer, health leaders say the spread of the virus around Springfield and southwest Missouri is trending down near the end of August.
As of Friday, the Springfield-Greene County Health Department reports a seven-day average of 80 new cases per day in Greene County. Health leaders say new COVID-19 cases have decreased 26% compared to the previous seven-day period last week.
The new data shows some of the Greene County’s lowest case numbers since June, just before experts say the Delta variant led to a surge in regional cases and hospitalizations. In July, the county averaged up to 230 new cases per day in some week-long stretches.
“While this is great news and shows the effect of our boost in vaccinations, we are still seeing a high rate of severe illness from COVID-19,” said the Springfield-Greene County Health Department in a tweet Friday.
Mercy Springfield and CoxHealth, the two major health systems of the Springfield metropolitan area, have both seen declines in COVID-19 patients over the past week. New data shows a nearly 10% drop in COVID-19 patients at Mercy and 15% drop for virus hospitalizations for CoxHealth.
Greene County health leaders report 160 hospitalizations as of Friday. According to the Springfield-Greene County COVID-19 Dashboard, hospitalizations in Greene County have dropped nearly 38% compared to one month ago.
Health leaders credit rising vaccinations for the recent drop in cases and hospitalizations.
“While keeping an eye on current state we look forward to the fall and what may be on the horizon,” said Erik Frederick, the Chief Administrative Officer of Mercy Springfield, via Twitter on Wednesday. “Be part of our planning effort. Get vaccinated. It’s a selfless act.”
The Springfield-Greene County Health Department reports that 46.46% of its population eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine has been fully vaccinated. Health leaders say Greene County reached a 40% mark for fully-vaccinated residents in mid-July.
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