>>>Updated: July 22, 2020 at 5:52 p.m.
Wednesday's total confirmed COVID-19 cases in Cape County rose by 12 from Tuesday to 483, according to the Cape Girardeau Department of Public Health. Probable cases remained at 44, and active cases dropped by 54 to 183. Overall cases rose by 12 to 527. The number of recoveries rose by 66 to 341. There were 161 cases outside of Cape and Jackson, 276 were within the City of Cape, and 90 were within the city of Jackson.
The largest growth in active COVID-19 cases in Cape County is within the 20 to 29 age group, which now totals 182.
There have been three total deaths. The most recent death was reported May 29th. The first death was reported in Cape County due to COVID-19 on April 7th. The second death was on May 14th.
There have also been multiple potential COVID-19 community exposure events.
The Cape Girardeau County Public Health Center issued an Emergency Face Covering Order on Monday, July 13, which remains in effect.
To reduce the spread of COVID-19, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends that people wear cloth face coverings in public settings when around people outside of their household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
The cloth face coverings recommended in the Order are not surgical masks or respirators. Cloth face coverings should NOT be worn by children under the age of 3 or anyone who has trouble breathing, is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
If any symptoms develop that are consistent with COVID-19, those individuals are asked to self-isolate immediately and contact a primary care physician to determine the need for testing.
More free area-wide COVID-19 tests continue to be scheduled throughout the state of Missouri. Participants will be required to register at the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services website.
Friday, June 12, the Cape Girardeau County Public Health Department issued a public health proclamation, in response to the lifting of statewide restrictions that have been in place during the COVID-19 outbreak, as announced by Governor Parson on June 11th. The public health emergency in Cape Girardeau County, as declared on March 27, 2020, remains in effect.
The proclamation states: "COVID-19 is in the community with widespread community transmission; and does not have any proven treatment or vaccine to mitigate the morbidity or mortality of the disease;and all residents and businesses should: continue to follow social distancing guidelines, maintaining a distance of least six feet; continue implementation of personal protective measures, such as staying at home when ill, washing hands frequently, and wearing a mask when in public or at work; avoid all non-essential travel or travel to areas that have been affected by COVID-19; and avoid mass gatherings where social distancing cannot be maintained. All businesses should follow OSHA rules, regulations, and guidelines to protect workers from COVID-19."
Positive COVID-19 cases around the region widely vary. Scott county has reported 266 cases, with thirteen deaths; Perry county has reported 184 cases and three deaths; Stoddard county has reported 177 cases with nine deaths; Bollinger county has reported 47; St. Genevieve county has reported 31, with one death; St. Francois county has reported 214, with two deaths; Mississippi county has reported 121; New Madrid county has reported 114 cases with one death; Butler county has reported 154; Carter county has reported nine cases with one death; Reynolds county has reported ten cases; Ripley county has reported 34, and Wayne county has reported five.
The Southeast Correctional Center has reported 47 total positive cases of COVID-19 among inmates in one housing wing, and all are in isolation. 46 inmates have recovered. One inmate tested positive, and then negative, while already hospitalized with other medical conditions. He died in the hospital April 2, 2020. Twenty total prison staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. Eighteen prison staff members have recovered. According to the Missouri Department of Corrections, everyone who has had close contact with a staff member testing positive for COVID-19 has been notified.
On June 11, Governor Mike Parson announced that Missouri would fully reopen and enter Phase 2 of its "Show Me Strong Recovery Plan" on Tuesday, June 16, 2020.
During Phase 2, there will be no statewide health order. All statewide restrictions will be lifted, though local officials will still have the authority to put further rules, regulations, or ordinances in place. The decision to reopen was dependent on the four essential "Show Me Strong Recovery" goals: expanding testing capacity and volume in the state; expanding reserves of PPE by opening public and private supply chains; continuing to monitor and, if necessary, expand hospital and health care system capacity; and improving the ability to predict potential outbreaks using Missouri's public health data.
To date, 36,063 COVID-19 cases have been confirmed in Missouri, and there have been 1,159 deaths. 589,460 individuals have been tested for the virus statewide, using the PCR method, according to the most recent data from Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, as of July 22, at 2 p.m.