SEIU Healthcare Missouri sounds alarm over insufficient stay-at-home order

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Parson’s weak order is failing to slow the spread of coronavirus outbreak

According to ominous new projections from the Institute of Health and Medical Evaluation (IHME) at the University of Washington, more Missourians will die from COVID-19 than in California, Illinois, and Louisiana. The new figure is up by 400 percent over previous estimates.

Lenny Jones, SEIU Healthcare Missouri state director and vice president, said Governor Parson’s stay-at-home order, while welcome, has been too weak and ambiguous to slow the spread of the virus.

“The stay-at-home order announced by Gov. Parson on April 3 was welcome news to health experts, front line healthcare workers, and our union,” Jones said. “However, upon further examination it is clearly inadequate given the lack of success in slowing the spread of coronavirus.

“Non-essential businesses should be closed statewide immediately,” he said. “Missourians should be encouraged to only leave the home for necessities like groceries and prescriptions. Healthcare workers on the front lines need adequate PPE and hazard pay as they continue to risk their own health and safety through this pandemic. We must do better for our state to turn around the accelerating path of infection we are on to save lives.”

An examination of the IHME’s evolving projection of the death toll in Missouri shows why Parson’s current stay-at-home order is not working.

PROJECTION TIMELINE

  • April 5 – IHME updated its COVID-19 model to account for the stay-at-home order; Missouri was projected to suffer 352 total deaths by August.
  • April 10 – IHME revised Missouri’s anticipated deaths upward to 1,161, presumably due to the weakness of the stay-at-home order and its failure to slow the spread of the virus.
  • April 13 – IHME again revised Missouri’s anticipated death toll upward to 1,713. Missouri is now on pace to have more COVID-19 deaths than many current hotspots including California, Illinois, and Louisiana.

CALLING ON PARSON TO ACT
“We are calling on Governor Parson to revise the current stay-at-home order to address these insufficiencies and to lead on ensuring our healthcare heroes across the state have what they need to safely and effectively treat patients in our hospitals, protect residents in our nursing homes, and provide vital home care services to seniors and people with disabilities,” Jones said.


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