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Missouri’s Dept. of Health releases results of COVID-19 testing events in southwest part of state

The state of Missouri hosted testing for COVID-19 in Barry County.
The state of Missouri hosted testing for COVID-19 in Barry County.(KY3)
Published: Jul. 8, 2020 at 1:43 PM CDT
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JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (Edited News Release/KY3) -

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) reports a positivity rate of nearly 9% after the state held testing events in Barry, Newton, Jasper and McDonald Counties between June 26-30.

The state opened the testing sites to any Missouri resident. Of the 2,195 individuals residing in these four counties and tested during these events, 197 tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19, for a 8.97% positivity rate.  

As of now, up to 50 Missouri counties have participated in community testing events which has allowed public health officials to learn more about COVID-19 transmission. It is expected that those four southwest Missouri counties will participate in another round of community testing events beginning on July 18. 

“We continue to appreciate the many people choosing to get tested, and we are grateful for our partners with the Missouri National Guard and local public health agencies for making these events so user-friendly,” said Dr. Randall Williams, director of DHSS. “Gov. Parson has made it a priority among all of us in state government to provide greater access to testing for Missourians, and that is exactly what these events do.”

Significant growth of COVID-19 cases in southwest Missouri has been monitored since mid-June by health officials. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), DHSS and local public health agencies in the counties of McDonald, Jasper, Newton and Barry, and the city of Joplin have worked jointly to conduct epidemiological investigation in the area.

Some clusters in the area have been linked to essential workers of food processing plants where the “box in” public health strategy was used to limit further spread of the virus. This approach involves comprehensive testing, isolating all infected people, locating all contacts of the infected people, and having those contacts self-quarantine for 14 days. 

To register for community testing events in Missouri, visit health.mo.gov/communitytest or call 877-435-8411. Translation services are available. Additional events being held in southwest Missouri will be added to the registration site in the coming days.

Copyright 2020 KY3. All rights reserved.

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