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FRIDAY UPDATES: Pettis County reports fifth COVID-19 death

UPDATE 6 P.M.: Pettis County has lost another resident to COVID-19.

The health department announced the county's fifth death Friday on its Facebook page. Pettis County, with about 42,000 people, is now tied with Boone County, population 180,000, in COVID-19 deaths.

Pettis County also saw the region's biggest jump in cases Friday outside Boone County. The county health department reported 32 cases for a total of 599. The county has logged 128 cases this week alone.

Pettis County had 137 active cases as of Friday.

We are deeply saddened to report the passing of another Pettis County resident (no further information will be released in order to protect the privacy of the family).

Posted by Pettis County Health Center on Friday, August 14, 2020

The county's public health board announced a mask order last week, but the order is facing a legal challenges from several county residents.

Cole County reported 22 cases Friday, its second-highest total of the last week. A case surge continues there and health officials say positive test rates are ticking up amid a move to conserve tests. A case that had been reported Thursday was removed from the county's total, which was 490 after Friday's update.

Active cases dropped four to reach 83 despite the new infections.

This graph shows Cole County's daily cases for the month of August.

Several other Mid-Missouri counties also reported significant increases in cases Friday as the state reported nearly 1,500 new infections.

Randolph County reported six new cases of COVID-19 for a total of 83 since the pandemic began. The county now has 23 active cases.

The City of Moberly said Friday that its water office will be closed temporarily pending COVID-19 testing of employees. The city made the decision after an employee tested positive for the novel coronavirus, according to a news release.

**WATER OFFICE CLOSURE**Due to a positive Covid-19 test result within the Water Office, the Water Office will be under...

Posted by City of Moberly, Missouri on Friday, August 14, 2020

The city is targeting a reopening date of Thursday and plans to deep clean city hall this weekend.

Cooper County logged seven new cases for a total of 171 cases and has recorded 23 new cases since Tuesday. The county now has 50 active cases.

The Associated Press reported Friday that Cooper and Pettis counties have some the state's largest two-week increases in case rates per 100,000 people. Infections have increased at a higher rate in rural Missouri over the past two weeks than in metro areas, the AP reported.

Other counties reporting increases Friday were Osage (1), Miller (1) and Audrain (4).

Boone County records highest daily COVID-19 case total of the week

UPDATE 4:55 P.M.: Boone County health officials reported a higher positive rate of COVID-19 tests in the last week as the county reported its largest daily case total of the week.

The Columbia/Boone County Department of Public Health and Human Services reported 34 new cases Friday, bringing the county's total to 1,537 since the pandemic began.

The daily figure climbed into the 30s after spending four days since Sunday in the teens and 20s. The county's daily cases have fluctuated during the summer COVID-19 surge but remain well above the levels seen earlier in the pandemic.

The 34 new cases Friday pushed the five-day rolling average of new cases to 25.8, an increase of nearly six points compared to Thursday. The health department also released the county's updated positive rate of COVID-19 tests for the week ending Thursday.

The rate went up to 11.1 percent -- an increase of 1.4 percent over the week before. The rate measures the percentage of people tested for COVID-19 who receive a positive result.

The health department said fewer tests of county residents were conducted during the week but more positive cases were reported.

The number of active cases in the county rose by 23 to 263. The number of people in quarantine Friday because they've had close contact with someone with COVID-19 rose back above 500 after spending a day below that number.

The county's hospitals reported treating 29 patients with COVID-19, well above the numbers seen for most of the pandemic. Six of those patients were on ventilators.

Hospitals reported no shortages of staff, supplies or beds.

MU layoffs and pay cuts increase, savings stay the same

UPDATE 3:59 P.M.: The University of Missouri posted more COVID-19 related budget cuts on Friday but savings didn't change.

Updated budgetary actions on the MU Human Resources website said layoffs went up by six to 200 and pay cuts increased by 19 to 2,381 over the last week.

The website included furloughs decreased by one to 3,667 over the same length of time.

Although the additional pay cuts resulted in $800,000 in additional savings, layoffs offset the amount adding back $800,000.

MU spokesman Christian Basi said managers could have decided not to layoff some employees who have higher salaries.

"It was likely due to decisions changing from this week to last week," Basi said. "For example, there could have been some managers who made a decision to not layoff individuals combined with new layoffs that did not have similar salary savings."

Total savings came to $19.25 million as of Friday.

Missouri rolling COVID-19 positive rate stays near 12 percent

UPDATE 2:40 P.M.: Missouri's rolling rate of positive COVID-19 tests stayed steady at nearly 12 percent Friday as the state reported nearly 1,500 new cases.

The rate was 11.8 percent, the same as the rate reported Thursday. The positive rate -- which measures the number of people tested for COVID-19 who are positive over the last week -- has been on an upward trend this summer as case numbers have grown.

Health officials over the course of the pandemic have pegged 10 percent as a critical level, with rates above that number being cause for concern.

The state reported 1,473 new cases Friday for a total of 65,270 since the pandemic began. Ten new deaths were reported for a total of 1,332 since the start of the pandemic.

The number of total cases in Missouri increased by nearly 10 percent over the last week, the state health department reported on its online COVID-19 dashboard.

Missouri logged three days below 1,000 new cases starting last weekend before vaulting back above that level Wednesday and staying there.

The rate of positive tests has also been on the rise in Boone County after a major spike early last month. The rate for the week that ended Thursday was 11.1 percent, an increase of 1.4 percent from the week before, the county health department said.

The number peaked at nearly 16 percent in July before dropping later that month but has been on a steady ascent since that time.

Boone County is among the top 10 jurisdictions for total cases statewide and local officials have kept COVID-19 health orders in place over the summer. Columbia also requires people to wear masks in public and anywhere social distancing is not possible.

Howard County has jumped into the top 10 counties statewide for percentage growth in cases. County health officials reported 60 cases there with 14 of them active as of Thursday. Some of those positives are from Central Methodist University students, the local health department says.

Hundreds of active COVID-19 cases at Missouri prisons

UPDATE 11:19 A.M.: Hundreds of workers and inmates at Missouri prisons had active COVID-19 cases as of Friday morning.

The Missouri Department of Corrections COVID-19 website said 124 staff members and 281 inmates actively had coronavirus.

Missouri Department of Corrections

Data from the state prison system said 686 inmates and 209 prison workers have tested positive for COVID-19 since the pandemic started.

Jefferson City Correctional Center was the only state prison listed with no confirmed COVID-19 cases.

Missouri Eastern Correctional Center in Pacific had the most active cases with 136, prison data said.

Chillicothe Correctional Center confirmed the most positive cases with 232 inmates and 24 workers testing positive.

According to the prison system's website, 24,849 inmates have been tested for coronavirus and one inmate has died from COVID-19.

At least 29 non-prison staff members have also tested positive for COVID-19. Seventeen of the cases were active and 12 had recovered as of Friday.

William Woods University staff members test positive for COVID-19

Two William Woods University staff members tested positive for COVID-19 on Thursday.

According to a post on the university website, the workers will self-isolated off-campus for at least 10 days.

The announcement was made as some students are set to return to campus Friday and over the weekend, a university document said.

The fall semester is set to start on Monday.

Another university that tested positive for COVID-19 last week has since recovered, according to the website.

The school's return to campus guidelines said all university workers, students and others are required to wear masks on-campus when social distancing is not possible.

It included face coverings are required when entering a classroom, in hallways, and in common areas of residence halls and campus buildings.

Callaway / Email Alert – Breaking News / Fulton / Missouri / News / Top Stories / University of Missouri

ABC 17 News Team

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