Tim Brinker video

Franklin County has seen a surge in COVID-19 cases over the last several weeks with a total of 258 new cases since Monday.

As of Wednesday, Nov. 11, 79 new COVID-19 cases were reported, bringing the overall total since March to 3,668.

Long-term care cases are still on the rise with a total of 81, which accounts for both residents and staff. That is an increase of eight over the last 24 hours.

Hospitalizations of Franklin County residents stands at 22 and the death toll remains at 57. Mercy Hospital Washington President Eric Eoloff said Tuesday, Nov. 10, that the hospital was caring for 26 patients with COVID-19-related illnesses. Six of those patients are from outside Franklin County.

Presiding Franklin County Commissioner Tim Brinker — who serves as the public information officer for the Franklin County Health Department regarding the COVID-19 pandemic — sent an email to The Missourian Tuesday, stating the urgency that needs to be taken to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“Having just finished conversations with our St. Louis regional health leaders and political leaders, it is absolutely hyper critical that all Missourians adhere to the recommendations regarding all aspects of mitigating the virus,” Brinker wrote.

He said, “the St. Louis regional health care system is currently days away from being left with making the grave choice of who gets treated and who gets put on hold while in critical care need.

“The facts are indeed telling, and the numbers do not lie. Do your part, wear a mask in public, make conscious choices that will help prevent spread, the time is now for everyone,” Brinker said. “Parents tell your children. Children remind your parents. Help our elders stay safe. If you are sick stay home. If you can work from home, do it.”

Brinker said the virus is the enemy and described the months long battle residents have faced with as a war, urging residents to take personal responsibility in mitigating the spread.

In an effort to help fight “the war” on COVID-19, Brinker said the health department and the county have contracted with MAXIMUS Federal Services Inc. to provide additional contact tracing and case management.

“The contract will provide much needed relief to our already stressed health department,” Brinker said. “Included will be 10 contact tracers, supervisory and operations personnel, data entry and five case managers. Contract cost is $363,993.”