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The Jefferson County Health Department reported 204 new COVID-19 cases since its last report on Friday (Oct. 23).

As of midnight Sunday (Oct. 25), the county had a total of 6,022 COVID-19 cases since the first ones were reported in March.

The county also had a total of 78 COVID-19-related deaths, after 12 more were reported last week.

As of Oct. 25 at midnight, 932 of the county’s total cases were active ones, which includes lab-confirmed cases and probable cases, which are still under investigation and have not been released from either quarantine or isolation, the Health Department reported.

Of the 6,022 cases in the county, 5,565 were lab confirmed and 457 were probable cases. A case is considered probable when a person has been exposed to a positive case and is exhibiting symptoms, the Health Department reported.

A total of 1,033 people were in quarantine, which means a person has a confirmed exposure to the virus and is in the process of completing a 14-day quarantine period.

Of the county’s total coronavirus cases, 667 had been at long-term care facilities, which includes residents and staff members who live in Jefferson County.

The county has had at least 20 COVID-19 outbreaks in long-term care facilities, according to the Health Department.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) defines an outbreak as one or more residents testing positive for the virus or one or more staff members who have worked within a facility in the 14 days before testing positive.

Color status

On Oct. 21, the Health Department reported the county was in the orange status on its COVID-19 warning system for a third week.

The orange level is the second highest level on the four-color system and indicates widespread but controlled transmission of the virus.

“Our community transmission, represented by the color status, directly impacts our ability to rebuild in the wake of COVID,” Health Department director Kelley Vollmar said. “By working together to intentionally reduce the level of virus in the community, we support the greater positive good for recovery of our businesses, schools, churches and long-term care facilities.”

An orange color status means over the previous week, the county, which has a population of about 225,000 people, had a rolling average of 10 to 24 new COVID-19 cases per day per 100,000 residents.

For the week of Oct. 11 to 17, the county had a seven-day rolling average of 21.97.

If the county has a rolling average of 25 or more cases per day per 100,000 residents it is moved into the highest level, which is the red level.

The Health Department uses the Harvard Global Health Institute four-color system to indicate community transmission level.

According to the Health Department, the WHPTF recently revised its color system, changing from three colors to five colors – light green, dark green, yellow, orange and red.

To be in the red zone on the WHPTF system, a county must have 101 or more new cases per 100,000 people in the past week and a COVID-19 positive test rate at or above 10.1 percent.

For the week that ended Oct. 17 (the latest data available), the county had 346 new COVID-19 cases, and its positive test rate was 11.8 percent, which was up from the week before.

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