Anyone working or learning at Capital Region Medical Center in Jefferson City will have to be vaccinated by Nov. 15, with no exceptions for medical or religious reasons, the hospital said Wednesday.
The hospital cited the ongoing coronavirus surge in cases, hospitalizations and deaths that is being fueled by the delta variant. Most of Capital Region’s COVID-19 patients are not vaccinated and nearly 99% of U.S. coronavirus deaths nationally are in unvaccinated people, Capital Region said in a news release.
“The health and safety of our employees, patients and our community remain our top priority,” Gaspare Calvaruso, president of Capital Region Medical Center, said in the release. “With full FDA approval granted for the Pfizer vaccine for everyone 16 and older, we believe the time is appropriate to mandate vaccination for Capital Region employees.”
The vaccination deadline is meant to make sure employees and students at Capital Region are inoculated in time for flu season. The hospital joins MU Health Care and SSM-St. Mary’s in requiring vaccinations. Boone Health is holding off on a requirement, instead choosing to provide incentives.
Cole County has ranked among the worst in Missouri for most new cases per capita for several weeks. The county ranked 26th Wednesday for new cases, according to state health officials. It ranks 44th for most deaths per capita over the course of the pandemic.
Cole County is in the top 10 for vaccination rate, with 42.1% of its population completing vaccination.
State records fewer than 2,000 new cases for fifth straight day
The state health dashboard added 1,898 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 Wednesday morning. It marked the fifth day in a row the state recorded fewer than 2,000 new cases of the virus.
In total, Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services has confirmed 619,920 positive cases since the start of the pandemic. That total does not account for the 124,584 probable coronavirus cases also found since the start of the pandemic.
State health dashboard on Aug. 25, 2021.
The statewide seven-day COVID-19 positivity rate also remained the same, sitting at 13.1%.
Despite signs that coronavirus cases in the state are leveling out, state health officials recorded 21 new deaths due to COVID-19, pushing the Show-Me State’s death toll to 10,397.
COVID hospitalizations also saw an increase. The latest data from DHSS shows 2,268 patients were being treated in Missouri hospitals on Sunday. Of those patients, 657 were receiving intensive care.
COVID-19 hospitalizations up again in State Profile Report
New COVID-19 hospital admissions went up 3% to 1,913 per 100,000 according to Missouri’s latest State Profile Report.
Hospital admissions in Missouri
The report shows while new cases are down 8% to 17,564 per 100,000 people, Missouri remains in the “red” with high community transmission of the virus.
New Cases per 100,000 in Missouri
COVID-19 related deaths remained the same, at 183 per 100,000.
In Missouri hospitals, 32 are reporting staffing shortages with seven reporting supply shortages. Both numbers remain unchanged from the previous profile report.
All Missouri counties remain in the red zone, or high transmission level, outside of Scotland County, which is in the yellow zone.
Vaccine rates across the state are falling according to the latest report, as 43,980 people 18 and older initiated vaccination last week which is 17.9% lower than the last report.
The report said 10,308 people 12-17 years old initiated vaccination last week, which is 2.6% lower than the last report. Meanwhile, 54,288 people 12 and older received their first dose last week, which is 15.4% lower than the last report.
Separately, the CDC also updated the proportions of variants in the nation. According to the latest data, the delta variant now accounts for 97.6% of new cases in Missouri, which is up .1% from the previous data.
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