What You Need to Know: Missouri’s Guidelines to Combat Spread of COVID-19

MARCH 17, 2020

 — As concerns over the new coronavirus (COVID-19) continue to grow across the state and the nation, Governor Mike Parson and his administration are working each day to respond to the virus and help combat the spread. 

In line with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, as well as federal guidance from the Trump Administration, the state encourages Missourians to follow these guidelines:

1. Listen to and follow the directions of your state and local authorities.

2. If you feel sick, stay home. Do not go to work. Contact your medical provider.

3. If your children are sick, keep them at home. Do not send them to school. Contact your medical provider.

4. If someone in your household has tested positive for COVID-19, keep the entire household at home. Do not go to work. Do not go to school. Contact your medical provider.

5. If you are an older person, stay home and away from other people.

6. If you are a person with a serious underlying health condition that can put you at increased risk (for example, a condition that impairs your lung or heart function or weakens your immune system), stay home and away from other people.

7. Even if you are young, or otherwise healthy, you are at risk and your activities can increase the risk for others. It is critical that you do your part to stop the spread of COVID-19. 

8. Avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 50 people. 

9. Avoid eating or drinking in bars, restaurants, and food courts – use drive-thru, pickup, or delivery options.

10. Avoid discretionary travel, shopping trips, and social visits.

11. Do not visit nursing homes or retirement or long-term care facilities unless to provide critical assistance.

12. Practice good hygiene:

  • Wash your hands, especially after touching any frequently used item or surface.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Sneeze or cough into a tissue, or the inside of your elbow.
  • Disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible.

13. Practice common sense and personal responsibility.

The state has taken several steps to encourage social distancing and limit the spread of COVID-19 in Missouri, including the restriction or suspension of visitors at Missouri’s veterans homes, correctional facilities, and mental health facilities. Public tours and events in the State Capitol have also been shut down. 

In accordance with CDC recommendations, Governor Parson has strongly urged the cancellation or suspension of public gatherings of 50 individuals or more. Governor Parson has also asked that facilities attracting large concentrations of senior citizens strongly consider restrictions or closures, in consultation with health authorities, to protect those most vulnerable to this virus.

Today, Governor Parson announced that Missouri casinos will be closed through March 30, 2020, in order to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. Additionally, as of 2:30 p.m. today, a total of 432 Missouri public school districts/charter schools (out of 555) have closed or will soon close. Additional restrictive measures will be forthcoming. 

For more information, visit the CDC’s website at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus and the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) website at www.health.mo.gov/coronavirus

You may also call the DHSS hotline at 877-435-8411 for questions regarding COVID-19 in Missouri.