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The Springfield-Greene County Health Department, City of Springfield and Greene County Commission support Governor Mike Parson’s recommendation to follow revised Centers for Disease Control (CDC) guidance for large events and mass gatherings. The guidance recommends that for the next 8 weeks, organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more, with the exception of educational institutions, daycare facilities, and business operations.The full recommendation is described below. Both the City Council and Greene County Commission will meet separately to discuss this in the coming days.
“We understand that this may cause us to suspend the beloved traditions we have come to know and treasure. The celebrations. The long-awaited family gatherings. The big playoff games. Because those things that define us as a community are also unfortunately, a means to make us sick,” said Mayor Ken McClure.
“But the more we can do to limit the virus spread, the better it’s going to be for everyone,” explains Presiding Comissioner Bob Dixon. “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.”
CDC Guidance as of 3/15/2020
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. Examples of large events and mass gatherings include conferences, festivals, parades, concerts, sporting events, weddings, and other types of assemblies. These events can be planned not only by organizations and communities but also by individuals.
Therefore, CDC, in accordance with its guidance for large events and mass gatherings, recommends that for the next 8 weeks, organizers (whether groups or individuals) cancel or postpone in-person events that consist of 50 people or more throughout the United States.
Events of any size should only be continued if they can be carried out with adherence to guidelines for protecting vulnerable populations, hand hygiene, and social distancing. When feasible, organizers could modify events to be virtual.
This recommendation does not apply to the day to day operation of organizations such as schools, institutes of higher learning, or businessesThis 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. This recommendation is not intended to supersede the advice of local public health officials.
Guidance on considerations for COVID-19, as well as recommendations on cleaning and other health practices if events do go forward are available on our website at health.springfieldmo.gov/coronavirus.
It is again important to note that the Health Department is urging high risk groups—including those 60 and older, who have a chronic illness or who are immune-compromised—to take extra precautions. These include: