St. Louis fire Capt. Frank Florence with Hook & Ladder Fire Company No. 1 fits a custom-made fleur-de-lis mask on the Apotheosis of St. Louis, the King Louis IX statue, atop Art Hill in Forest Park on Thursday, Sept. 10, 2020. The St. Louis Arts Chamber of Commerce partnered with more than 10 organizations to mask over 35 statues and sculptures throughout St. Louis city and county to promote public health during the coronavirus pandemic. 
Laurie Skrivan,
ST. LOUIS Health officials for St. Louis, St. Louis County and Jefferson County are recommending that all residents, regardless of vaccine status, wear a mask during indoor gatherings as the more infectious and dangerous delta variant takes hold across Missouri.
For vaccinated individuals, the health departments advise residents to wear masks or other face coverings whenever they are indoors with other people whose vaccination status is unknown, the St. Louis and St. Louis County health departments said Thursday about their joint health advisory.
Jefferson County also on Thursday released a similar advisory.
Even though vaccines are highly effective against COVID-19, some who are vaccinated may still contract the disease, health officials said: Those people may unknowingly spread the disease to children younger than 12, who are not yet eligible to receive vaccinations, as well as to unvaccinated adults.
CoxHealth Hospital in Springfield, at the center of Missouris surge in cases, reported that four pediatric COVID-19 patients younger than 18 were in the hospital Wednesday. Statewide, the average number of hospitalized COVID-19 patients has gone from 662 to 879 in one month.