Update 7:00 p.m. Monday, March 23: Springfield and Greene County officials have confirmed that one person from the assisted living facility mentioned in this story has died from COVID-19.
Four cases of COVID-19 have been confirmed in a Springfield assisted care facility, local health officials announced Monday. The assisted living facility is Morningside of Springfield East, according to Springfield-Greene County Health Department Director, Clay Goddard.
Dean Linneman is director of Missouri's Division of Regulation and Licensure within the DHSS; that division inspects and investigates long term care facilities in Missouri.
"We are watching the other residents of this residential care facility to monitor them more closely for any signs or symptoms. And we are asking that, twice daily, the temperatures of all staff providing care are taken," Linneman said.
The Springfield-Greene County Health Department says this turn of events means the illness is now believed to be travelling by what’s called “community spread,” meaning new cases cannot be definitively traced to a unique person or place.
Clay Goddard, director of the health department, repeated the urge to stay home.
“I would encourage you to get creative about ways to stay emotionally connected during this time. But we need our community to take this seriously. Let’s use social media. Let’s use Facetime,” he said.
KSMU has asked the Springfield-Greene County Health Department where the four patients from the assisted living facility are right now; we have not yet received an answer.
The local coronavirus hotline is: 417-874-1211.
Katie Towns, assistant director of the health department, said the county has conducted more than 340 tests. Monday's midday count for confirmed cases in Greene County is at 17.