COVID cases continue to fill area hospitals

By The Examiner staff

Metro area hospitalizations from COVID-19 continue to creep up, as positive COVID-19 test percentages and new case totals continue to remain high in Eastern Jackson County. 

According to the dashboard maintained by the Mid-America Regional Council, as of Sunday 33 percent of hospital beds in the Kansas City metro area are available, down from 37 percent a week earlier, while 13 percent of those beds are occupied by COVID-19 patients, up from 12.4 percent a week earlier. Fifteen percent of ICU beds are available, down from last week’s 21 percent, and COVID-19 patients about 32 percent of those, holding steady from last week.

Those figures are also based on seven-day rolling averages.

According to the Jackson County Health Department, which covers the county outside Kansas City, the rolling 14-day positive test percentage was at 26.9 percent on Friday, similar to that percentage a week earlier. In EJC, the 14-day average has not been below 20 percent since the beginning of November and hasn’t been below 25 percent since Nov. 9.

The overall test percentage in EJC is 15.7 percent positive as of Friday – up a half-percent from a week earlier. The department confirmed an additional 1,600 cases over the past week, for 18,906 since the pandemic began. The case total as of Monday morning includes 189 deaths, including eight over the previous week. 

According to the department’s dashboard, the rolling seven-day average of new cases was at 146 on Friday, up from 138 a week earlier. That figure has not been below 100 since October.

As of last Wednesday, the Kansas City Health Department has confirmed more than 23,800 cases and 302 deaths since the pandemic began.

According to MARC, as of Sunday, there have been 96,119 confirmed cases in the nine-county metro area and 1,167 deaths, with 94 deaths and more than 8,500 additional cases confirmed over the past week.