Communities with spiking coronavirus numbers faced with tough decisions

Joplin Area Coronavirus

JASPER COUNTY, Mo. — As Missouri Governor Mike Parson reopens the state, communities like Jasper County, that are now facing a spike in coronavirus cases are being taxed with some tough decisions.

The health department and local leaders are encouraging the community to continue practicing safety guidelines.

Tony Moehr, Administrator, Jasper County Health Dept., said, “It is reopen, you don’t have the restrictions you had previously, but you should still be aware that it’s still in our community.”

As Missouri enters phase two of their recovery plan, the state is now fully reopen.

There are no statewide health guidelines in place…Leaving local leaders to make their own.

And in some cases, social distancing has been an after thought.

“Late last week were seeing some pretty significant increases in our case rates.”

The most recent data from the health department shows there are more than 190 confirmed covid-19 cases and over 400 people in quarantine in Jasper County.

Even with those numbers, Jasper County communities are remaining open.

Carl Francis, City Manager, Webb City, said, “We are not instituting any additional guidelines. We are asking people to practice safe practices, keep your distance, sanitize, hand washing.”

The Webb City City Hall is taking their own measures to protect themselves and the community.

Glass shields have been installed in the office and sanitizer is available.

Francis says we all have a personal responsibility of ensuring we are keeping ourselves and others safe.

“We’ve had several phone calls from businesses, asking about what the regulations and what the requirements are here in Webb City and there really are no regulations or requirements. But there is a request, that people maintain safe practices.”

“If you are going through the grocery store or a big box store or a small mom and pop store, you should assume that the person next to you could have the virus and they are asymptomatic. And so, people should assume that it is still out there and you van still get it and you should protect yourself as well as possible,” said Moehr.

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