Effective immediately, Health Board changes COVID focus

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The Perry County Public Health Department Board of Trustees took action Thursday, Sept. 9, to shift its priorities away from close contacts of COVID-19 to other COVID activities and priorities the health department has not focused on since the start of the pandemic in March 2020.

"We understand that with this decision, schools may struggle with the recommendations that may be safe for students," according to a board statement.

The health board then offered a three-pronged recommendation list.

To provide some guidance on this, the health department would recommend those expose be allowed to remain in school if:

  1. A mask is worn for a minimum of 10 days after the last date of exposure when social distancing (three feet) from others is not possible
  2. School personnel and parents closely monitor the individual for any symptoms of COVID-19, isolate them away from others immediately upon sumptom development, and exclude t hem from school to seek COVID testing or an alternative diagnosis before returning to school.
  3. Missouri State High School Activities Association guidelines are followed when it comes to participation in competitive play.

The decision came after the board met at the Catalyst Center for about an hour.

An estimated 30 individuals were in attendance, including three members of the Perry County District No. 32 Board of Education.

Several of those in attendance spoke publicly.

For more on this story, see the Sept. 16, 2021 print edition of the Republic-Monitor. The next regularly scheduled Health Board meeting will take place Tuesday, Sept. 21, at 9 a.m.

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