City of St. Louis Department of Health and Saint Louis County Department of Public Health Release Joint Statement on "Living With COVID-19"
The latest statement shares actions individuals and institutions like businesses and schools can take to foster safer and healthier environments.
As we observe the recent decline in new cases of COVID-19, we must also use lessons learned during the pandemic. COVID-19 remains in our community, and we cannot pretend we live in a world in which it doesn’t exist. Our ability to live with COVID-19 largely depends on how well we control its spread.
To that end, the St. Louis County Department of Public Health and the City of St. Louis Department of Health are releasing the attached “Living with COVID” document. It shares actions that individuals and institutions like businesses and schools can take to foster safer and healthier environments moving forward. We hope that this document helps the public understand that while COVID will likely remain a part of our lives for years to come, we have the tools necessary to control the disease and keep our communities safe – if we choose to use them.
“Similar to other communicable diseases, COVID-19 may likely remain in our community, much like the flu, and we must recognize the impact COVID-19 has had on our communities over the past two years,” says Dr. Mati Hlatshwayo Davis, Director of Health for the City of St. Louis. “Through this coordinated policy with Saint Louis County DPH, we can work in tandem to protect our residents and visitors in the weeks and months to come.”
Dr. Faisal Khan, acting director of the St. Louis County Department of Public Health, agreed.
“Three factors will determine the future course of the pandemic: the virus, its variants and human behavior. Out of the three we can only hope to influence and modify human behavior,” he said. “As we learn to live with the virus, we will need to practice assessing risk. The pandemic is not over, and we may yet be hit again with another surge. However, if we work together to protect ourselves and each other, we will be able to live our lives to the fullest. Please get vaccinated, wash your hands frequently and thoroughly, wear a mask in indoor public spaces and encourage others to do the same. Together we can beat this.”
The two health departments pledge to keep the public informed about the level of COVID-19 in our communities and how best to prevent, treat and recover from the disease. Their teams will continue educating county and city residents about the realities of living with this disease. Experts in both departments are available to speak with the media about the document and its practical applications for the public.