Missouri’s second coronavirus case reported Thursday

A Missouri patient in Greene County is the state’s second case of the virus, health officials reported Thursday.

Posted: Mar 12, 2020 8:56 PM
Updated: Mar 13, 2020 1:59 PM

(GREENE COUNTY, Mo.) A Missouri patient in Greene County is the state’s second case of the virus, health officials reported Thursday.

Gov. Mike Parson announced the second case and Federal Emergency funding of $13 million to support the state’s efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19.

The patient was treated at a CoxHealth clinic in Springfield after, health officials say, they apparently contracted the virus while traveling.

The patient is in their 20s and had recently traveled to Austria, Gov. Mike Parson said at a press conference Thursday.

Officials declined to answer reporters’ questions about whether the patient was a local college student, resident of Springfield or area.

Dr. Robert Trotman with CoxHealth said the patient called ahead before coming to the clinic. He said because of the patient’s notification, the patient was brought into an empty clinic, masked immediately, taken to a private room and screened immediately.

County and local health officials are trying to identify and reach out to anyone who may have been in close contact with the patient, said Clay Goddard, the director of Greene County Health Department.

Currently, the state is testing only people who are at risk of exposure and symptomatic.

The Governor said so far the state has had 71 of 73 patients test negative for COVID-19.

Randall Williams, the director of Missouri’s Department of Health and Senior Services said the state lab has the capability of testing 1000 specimens for COVID-19. He said the Centers for Disease Control is sending more on Friday.

It remains unclear how many specimens per patient is required for a COVID-19 analysis and how many patients the lab can process in one day.

This is the second case in the state. It’s considered a “presumptive-positive” case until the CDC confirms the result is positive.

On Saturday, the Gov. announced a St. Louis County woman in her 20s had contracted the virus in Italy. She was ordered to isolate herself at home, county officials said.

There has been no community person-to-person transmission in the state, Parson said.

The Department of Corrections announced Thursday visitors would not be allowed at Missouri Prisons in order to prevent the spread of the virus. The Veterans Affairs Commission also announced Veterans' homes across the state would also be closed to visitors to protect residents.

Parson said that while the State was taking every precaution, limiting the spread of the virus depended on Missourians following the advice from medical professionals and government officials.

“Use common sense,” he said. “Practice good hygiene. Wash your hands. Stay at home if you're sick and if you are told to self-quarantine it is very important to follow instructions.”

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