Missouri health chief seeks racial data on COVID-19

1 month 4 weeks 19 hours ago Wednesday, April 08 2020 Apr 8, 2020 Wednesday, April 08, 2020 5:27:00 PM CDT April 08, 2020 in News
By: The Associated Press

JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Missouri’s health chief said Wednesday that he is directing medical professionals to provide racial data about patients who become ill or die from the coronavirus as some black lawmakers raised concerns about the lack of such information.

Missouri so far has not released data about the race of people who test positive for the virus that causes COVID-19 or who die from its complications. Health director Randall Williams said that’s because about 40% of medical providers have not been reporting that information, although they have been reporting patients’ ages.

“We sent out a directive today to reinforce that we do want that demographic, because we think it’s really important,” Williams said in response to a question from The Associated Press.

Some other jurisdictions already have been reporting racial data. Of the victims whose demographic information was publicly shared by officials -- nearly 3,300 of the nation’s 13,000 deaths thus far — about 42% were black, according to an AP analysis. African Americans account for roughly 21% of the total population in the areas covered the analysis.

During legislative debate Wednesday on a multibillion-dollar budget bill, some black Missouri lawmakers criticized the lack of data on how COVID-19 has impacted black residents.

St. Louis Democratic Rep. Tommie Pierson Jr. said it would be “disturbing” if the state has data on race and is not sharing it.

“If the data is supposed to be being collected, then we need to ensure that it is and that it is shared with those making decisions,” Pierson said.

Missouri’s information about coronavirus-related deaths also has lagged in other regards.

Whereas data collected by Johns Hopkins University showed 86 Missouri deaths as of Wednesday afternoon, the state’s figures showed just 58. Williams said the state must take time to vet each reported death, because it is the source of official data supplied to the federal government.

St. Louis County and city have accounted for just over half of the statewide total of 3,327 COVID-19 cases reported by the Missouri health department as of Wednesday.

The new coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms for most people, but for some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness or death. The vast majority of people recover.

Missouri National Guard Adjutant General Levon Cumpton said Wednesday that the Guard is converting a hotel in the St. Louis County suburb of Florissant into a medical center that will have over 100 beds.

Leaders of the St. Louis Metropolitan Pandemic Task Force, made up of the region’s largest hospitals, said that the peak of the pandemic in the St. Louis area is expected to occur in two to three weeks.

Democratic St. Louis County Executive Sam Page sent a letter to Parson requesting that the Guard help transport patients and equipment, provide additional security at hospitals and fill in for staff at testing sites, among other things.

In neighboring St. Charles County, a new outbreak was reported at a psychiatric hospital. St. Charles County officials say 20 staff members and three patients at CenterPointe Hospital have tested positive since March 28.

Another alarming rise in confirmed cases was reported at a nursing home. Franklin County Presiding Commissioner Tim Brinker cited 34 confirmed cases and three deaths at Grandview Healthcare in Washington, Missouri, about 50 miles southwest of St. Louis.

More News

Grid
List
COLUMBIA - Police brutality protests continue in downtown Columbia on Saturday night. Over 150 protesters made their way down... More >>
3 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 7:51:00 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
(CNN) -- George Floyd's brother, Philonise Floyd , will testify before Congress on Wednesday during a House Judiciary Committee hearing... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 6:30:32 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Columbia residents marched Saturday in the wake of the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. The president... More >>
4 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 6:09:00 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA (Missourian) - Employees making over $60,000 in the MU athletics department will take a three-month pay cut beginning... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 5:44:27 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA (Missourian) - The principal of Rock Bridge High School will host a Zoom meeting Sunday to listen to... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 5:36:00 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA (Missourian) - The first round of open state testing in six counties around the state has resulted in... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 5:29:44 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY (AP) — Revenue collections in Missouri continue to drop because of the coronavirus. State Budget Director Dan... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 5:21:29 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
BRENTWOOD (KSDK-TV) — A man has been charged with driving through a crowd of peaceful protesters in suburban St. Louis... More >>
5 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 5:16:06 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
KANSAS CITY (The Kansas City Star) — An attorney is defending a Missouri woman who withdrew from the University of... More >>
6 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 4:54:26 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - MU employees and Missouri union workers marched through MU's campus on Saturday to deliver their list of demands... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 2:49:00 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
As COVID-19 continues to spread, KOMU 8 will continue to update you about the impacts in the community. ... More >>
8 hours ago Saturday, June 06 2020 Jun 6, 2020 Saturday, June 06, 2020 2:16:00 PM CDT June 06, 2020 in News
WASHINGTON (AP) — Joe Biden formally clinched the Democratic presidential nomination Friday, setting him up for a bruising challenge to... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 05 2020 Jun 5, 2020 Friday, June 05, 2020 9:45:00 PM CDT June 05, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - This week KOMU 8 will air a longform discussion among local law enforcement leaders, a community activist and... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 05 2020 Jun 5, 2020 Friday, June 05, 2020 9:16:00 PM CDT June 05, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA — Stephanie Browning, director of Columbia and Boone County's Public Health and Human Services, wrote a letter to the... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 05 2020 Jun 5, 2020 Friday, June 05, 2020 9:02:00 PM CDT June 05, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY – About 20 people gathered in front of the Jefferson City Police Department on Friday to fight racial... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 05 2020 Jun 5, 2020 Friday, June 05, 2020 8:40:00 PM CDT June 05, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA —The Boone County Fair has been canceled for the 2020 season, according to a news release from the... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 05 2020 Jun 5, 2020 Friday, June 05, 2020 8:17:23 PM CDT June 05, 2020 in News
JEFFERSON CITY - For protesters across the country, social distancing isn't what's on their mind when they protest. It's George... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 05 2020 Jun 5, 2020 Friday, June 05, 2020 7:01:00 PM CDT June 05, 2020 in News
COLUMBIA - Ty Gramley, of Columbia, was sentenced to 5 years in prison after pleading guilty to possession of child... More >>
1 day ago Friday, June 05 2020 Jun 5, 2020 Friday, June 05, 2020 6:13:05 PM CDT June 05, 2020 in News
Columbia, MO
Broken Clouds 81°
11pm 77°
12am 76°
1am 75°
2am 74°