Last week, I examined how Missouri was faring two weeks after the state-wide stay-at-home order was lifted. As I noted at the time, Missouri hadn’t melted down from its foray back toward freedom:
Tracking Missouri’s numbers since the stay was lifted on May 4th, the total number of cases has risen from 8,434 to 11,057 (so, by roughly 2,600.) Aside from a relatively large jump (5%) between the 4th and the 5th, the daily increase of cases has hovered around the 1-2% mark. The total number of deaths attributed to COVID-19 has risen from 377 to 604 (an increase of 227). Testing has increased from 82,152 to 157,044 — almost double.
As I also noted in that piece, however, St. Louis City and St. Louis County — two of the state’s most populous counties and where over half of the state’s confirmed cases were located — had only begun a modified lifting of their stay orders as of May 18th, so one might expect a measurable uptick in the weeks to follow.
So, where does Missouri stand as of May 25th? Turns out we’re getting along just fine (relatively speaking). As of this morning, Missouri’s total case count stands at 12,267 (1,210 more than a week ago, roughly 3,800 more than three-weeks ago.) The daily increase in total cases has continued to hover around the 1-2% mark, with the exception of the 24th into the 25th, which saw a 3% increase. Total deaths attributed to COVID-19 now sit at 690 (an increase of 313 since the lockdown was lifted.)
Testing has increased to 165,411 — a note on this, however. Up until this week, the state was combining both the viral (PCR) tests and the serological (antibody tests), thus, the total number of tests being counted via Worldometers included both. Once they started separating the numbers, Worldometers defaulted to the PCR tests only. So roughly 17,000 “tests” previously included in the count were backed out of it. (This explains the seemingly minimal increase in the testing numbers since last week despite the availability of testing having increased.) That said, Missouri is still flirting with the bottom-of-the-barrel in terms of tests-per-million persons (currently ranking 47th out of 51 — the fifty states plus D.C.) I’m hopeful that we’ll start to move up in that category over the next week.
Relative to other states, Missouri remains at 28th in terms of total cases (although we momentarily dropped to 29th behind Nebraska, before yesterday’s numbers came in.) We’re 37th in terms of cases-per-million persons, 22nd in total deaths, and 25th in deaths-per-million persons. Once again, largely middle of the pack.
Of course, if you’re following the national news coverage this weekend, we might be expected to see a dramatic uptick in the next two weeks, as social-distancing wasn’t being noticeably observed at the Lake of the Ozarks this weekend. Listen, the Lake has never met social-distancing — Party Cove is infamous for a reason. It will be fascinating to see what the numbers look like in another two-three weeks — if there’s a big spike, the nation’s disapproving Karens will have won the day. If there isn’t, then it will appear that chlorine, sunshine, booze, bikinis, and…FREEDOM! (*cue Braveheart meme*) will emerge victorious. (I know who I’m rooting for.)
Another bright spot in all of this is that Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services has upped its website game. Their COVID-19 dashboard has vastly improved. I’ll continue to track the numbers via Worldometers for the time being, just to make sure we’re looking at apples-to-apples.
In the meantime, I’ll be humming along with Kenny:
Met a man wearin’ a t-shirt, says “Virginia is for lovers”
Had a Bible in his left hand and a bottle in the other
He said “all you’re really given is the sunshine and your name”
We both started laughin’ when the sky started to rain
Get along, on down the road
We’ve got a long long way to go
Scared to live, scared to die
We ain’t perfect but we try