Joplin’s COVID-19 hospitalizations continue improvement at slow decline

Joplin Area Coronavirus

Irma Mesa, 74, receives the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at the Jackson Hospital in Miami on Jan. 27, 2021.. (AP Photo/Lynne Sladky, File)

Joplin’s COVID-19 hospitalization numbers continue their slow decline, with numbers improving at Joplin hospitals, comprising of Freeman, Mercy, and Landmark. As of Tuesday, March 16, there is a 13-hospitalization occupancy of COVID-19 patients in Joplin’s hospitals. This is two less than the occupancy number from last week on Wednesday, March 10. 

This number reflects the number of patients currently being treated with COVID-19 at the three previously mentioned hospitals. The 13-hospital occupancy includes residents outside Joplin city limits. As of March 16, there are two Joplin residents hospitalized due to COVID-19. This is the same number from Wednesday, March 10

Additionally, Freeman Health System has closed their medical COVID-19 unit after their last four COVID-19 patients were discharged Monday, March 15. They will take March 17 and 18 to deep clean, and afterward the space will then be used for regular usage. 

According to the Joplin COVID-19 Dashboard, last updated Tuesday, March 16 at 10 p.m., there have been a total of 5,914 cases of the Coronavirus in the city. Joplin has 31 active cases, a decrease of one from last week’s 32 cases. There are 5,756 inactive cases in the city and 127 deaths, which is three additional deaths since last week. There have been five new cases of COVID-19 in the last day, 33 cases in the last seven days, and 65 cases in the last 14 days. 

The dashboard’s graph shows the low number of cases in Joplin is staying consistent from over the past month, as compared to months previous to mid-February. Residents in the age group 20 to 29 continue to have the highest number of Coronavirus cases in Joplin, with 1,258 cases—six more cases than last week. Those in the age group 30 to 39 are second-highest, with 868 cases—two more than last week. And those under 20 are close behind, with 835 cases—two more than last week. 

This update comes just over two weeks after the expiration of Joplin’s mask mandate, as the mandate expired Sunday, February 28. The city is still in Phase 2—Step 4 of the Joplin Plan for Response and Recovery. Additionally, the 250 outdoor mass gathering restriction has been lifted, along with capacity and social distancing requirements in businesses and restaurants. 

Joplin is now in Phase 1B—Tier 3 of the COVID-19 vaccine distribution. This means those within this tier are now eligible for their vaccine. This includes those deemed “Critical Infrastructure,” such as individuals in education, childcare, the communications sector, government, and various other sectors

In regard to vaccine clinics, the city is continuing to offer clinics to its residents. Qualifying individuals may register for a clinic scheduled for Wednesday, March 24, held at Missouri Southern University through the city’s website

For more information regarding Missouri’s vaccination plan, visit their COVID-19 website, which also provides a map of current and future vaccinators within the state. 

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