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Children’s hospitals treating adults as virus surges

ST. LOUIS (AP) — Children’s hospitals here have started treating adult patients as area hospitals struggle to keep up with rising coronavirus cases.

Both St. Louis Children’s Hospital and SSM Health Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital have opened their doors to adults. Staff at SSM Health and BJC Healthcare children’s hospitals have also started volunteering to work at other overwhelmed hospitals.

Also, St. Louis Mayor Lyda Krewson announced on Friday that the city had reopened a temporary morgue at the corner of Chouteau Avenue and Papin Street, on a site provided by St. Louis Cremations, 2135 Chouteau.

The temporary morgue, in a large tent with refrigeration units, was set up in April and dismantled in June; now, with virus cases spiking, it’s back in service if needed.

Meanwhile, the St. Louis County health department shut down a fifth business for serving customers inside. The agency suspended Whalen’s Bar’s license for violating a public health order limiting indoor dining.

St. Louis County health officials have warned that there’s a higher risk of spreading the coronavirus when people remove face masks to dine indoors.

The state health department reported Saturday at least 19,223 new cases of the coronavirus in the past week, or about 2,746 new cases a day on average.

Health department Director Randall Williams said any upticks in cases caused by family gatherings on Thanksgiving would probably start showing up in the next week.

MetroSTL.com staff contributed to this report.

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