Local and state leaders are encouraging residents to follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention coronavirus guidance on group events.
The CDC yesterday issued a statement recommending that in-person events of 50 or more people be postponed over the next eight weeks. The guidance does not apply to businesses, schools and higher learning institutions.
“Large events and mass gatherings can contribute to the spread of COVID-19 in the United States via travelers who attend these events and introduce the virus to new communities,” the CDC statement reads. “This recommendation is made in an attempt to reduce introduction of the virus into new communities and to slow the spread of infection in communities already affected by the virus.”
Gov. Mike Parson’s office, as well as the Springfield-Greene County Health Department and the city and county, issued separate news releases suggesting Missourians follow the CDC’s recommendation.
“Missouri continues to work closely with both federal and local officials in order to maximize coordination and tailor our response appropriately,” Parson said in a release. “It takes all of us at the local, state and federal level, along with neighbors, families and fellow citizens, to use common sense and personal responsibility to work through these tough times and protect the health and safety of all Missourians.”
In a joint release, the Health Department, city and county supported the decision.
“The more we can do to limit the virus spread, the better it’s going to be for everyone,” Greene County Presiding Commissioner Bob Dixon said in the release. “If we don’t, the heaviest burden will be with our first responders. The emergency service providers, hospitals and medical staff — the very people we will depend on to heal and care for our sick friends and family.”
The Health Department on Friday had recommended that group events of 250 or more be postponed.
State of emergency
In response to the respiratory virus, Parson on Friday signed an executive order declaring a state of emergency in Missouri.
The executive order provides $7 million in state funds for coronavirus response efforts, and it directs state agencies to work to report and combat unfair market practices, among other measures according to a news release.
The Missouri State Public Health Lab is expected to receive more tests from the CDC, pushing its capacity to test 1,600 individuals. The lab had tested 94 people as of Friday.
The Springfield-Greene County Health Department previously announced a mobile testing unit would be launched today. It will not be open to the public and will require physician referrals.
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A baked goods vendor at Farmers Market of the Ozarks expanded to a brick-and-mortar operation; the first lending center for Old Missouri Bank opened; and London Calling Pasty Co. added a new food truck.