Springfield-Greene County Health Director Clay Goddard stated at a press conference Tuesday that 300 residents are under a quarantine order from the Health Department.
The total was given during a press conference Tuesday that announced two more deaths in Greene County from COVID-19.
Goddard also said the department’s epidemiology reports make it appear the virus was in the Greene County area earlier than when restrictions on the community were put in place.
“Our epidemiology tells us that at least as early as late February is when we think we had our first cases,” Goddard said. “That doesn’t mean it wasn’t here earlier than that, but remember, testing bandwidth was extremely limited at that time.”
Goddard also admonished the community to not take advantage of the opportunities to leave their homes that are allowed under the Stay at Home orders because it enhances the possibility of viral spread.
“It’s called Stay at Home because that’s what we need you to do as much as possible,” Goddard said. “You don’t need to be going to the grocery store every day. We don’t need to be out buying spring flowers and mulch right now. Those of us working in essential services need to do our jobs and then we need to return home.”
Goddard said that the virus only grows in the community when sick people come into contact with healthy people, the very thing that social distancing and stay at home orders prevent in society.
“The virus is fueled by people being physically close to one another,” Goddard said. “It relies on sick people intermingling with healthy people. If we can stop as much as possible that intermingling…then that virus runs out of fuel.”
Goddard did note that he was talking about enclosed places like grocery stores; he was not asking people to curtail outdoor exercise like trail hiking or golf, saying in those situations it’s easy for people to maintain social distance of at least six feet from each other.