Columbia will remain under its existing health order through at least November 3rd.
Public Health Director Stephanie Browning made the announcement on Friday. She says the decision was made given the increasing number of hospitalizations and a return to in-seat classes for elementary schools in the Columbia Public School District. Browning says the extension will ensure local resources can meet the demand that will likely occur in the coming weeks.
Boone County reports its COVID-19 case count is relatively stable, only increasing a slight amount recently.
But the upward trend in hospitalizations indicates an increased severity of the disease. As of Friday, there were 80 COVID-19 inpatients in Boone County Hospitals. Browning reports nearly 80% of those patients come from surrounding counties where restrictions aren’t in place. She says this provides further support for extending the order to help reduce the burden on the county’s healthcare system.