Efforts to coordinate communication and care should the Coronavirus-COVID-19 spread to mid-Missouri are underway.

Efforts to coordinate communication and care should the Coronavirus-COVID-19 spread to mid-Missouri are underway. 

Lake Regional Health System, Central Ozarks Medical Center, lake area county health departments, school nurses, area EMS providers, fire and police chiefs gathered last week as agencies across the state monitor the spread of the virus. The focus of the meeting was to discuss communication between the various agencies, transport of patients and personal protective equipment and other ways to work together to prevent or contain an outbreak should it occur. 

Lake Regional is monitoring the situation closely, and receives regular updates from the Missouri Department of Health Senior Services and the CDC. A multidisciplinary team that includes Infection Prevention and Emergency Management personnel is meeting regularly to ensure LRHS is taking all recommended precautions to protect the health and safety of patients and employees, according to their website. 

Lake Regional is screening patients at all intake points for potential exposure to this virus. When patients check in, the front desk and registration staff will ask about the patient’s travel history and symptoms of a communicable disease, and implement isolation precautions, as appropriate.

A priority across the state is preparing school districts for a potential spread of the virus. Schools have been closely following the media reports and information shared by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

While no cases have been reported among local communities, School of the Osage Superintendent Laura Nelson said the district started communicating with parents about 10 days ago.

“Parents can be assured we are monitoring the situation and will provide information as it becomes available from public health authorities,” she said. 

Johnson said based on current information, health officials are recommending local communities and schools should take the same steps to protect against the coronavirus as taken to prevent the spread of everyday illnesses like the common cold and flu. 

Depending on what, if anything happens, any decisions that need to be made regarding a change to school operations will be done so with guidance from the CDC, local health officials along with the Missouri Department of Health and Senior (DHSS). 

Camdenton School District’s Health Coordinator Rhonda Franken said the outbreak of COVID-19 is dynamic and changing daily. Camdenton’s goal is to keep students, staff and the community safe and healthy. To aid in that, the district is asking parents, students, staff and the community to follow everyday precautions the same as those for the flu and common cold to prevent the spread of any viruses.