COVID-19 Message to Rural Communities

In the past few weeks, Missouri has seen an increasing spread of COVID-19 from population centers to more rural communities. This is concerning as rural areas tend to have more limited access to health care and populations that are older and have more chronic health conditions. During this time, we all have a role in protecting our communities and limiting the spread of this disease.  Whether you have COVID 19, are a caregiver of an individual with COVID-19 , or just going out in public places, there are actions that you should be taking.

When leaving the home:

  • Limit the number of people leaving the house.
    • Identify only one person that leaves to get groceries and other essential products.
  • Practice Social Distancing.
    • Pay special attention when standing in line to receive services and avoid large groups.
  • Face coverings can help protect you and others.
    • If used, the face covering should be used properly.
  • Stop hand shaking – practice good hygiene.
    • Use other noncontact methods of greeting.
  • Increase habits and reminders to avoid touching your face and cover coughs and sneezes.
  • Additional recommendations when leaving your home and prevention tips can be found at: and Households Living in Close Quarters

An individual with COVID-19 should:

  • Limit Contact with individuals.
    • Isolate himself or herself to a certain area or room of house.
    • Use a separate bathroom, if possible.
  • Avoid sharing personal items, such as dishes, towels, or bedding.
  • Eat in a separate room, if possible.
  • Call ahead before visiting a medical provider.
  • Wear a facemask when around other people or visiting healthcare facility.

A caregiver of an individual with COVID 19 should:

  • Help the individual follow their healthcare provider’s instructions and monitor symptoms.
  • Separate himself or herself from the individual whenever possible.
  • Sleep in a separate bedroom and avoid sharing personal items, if possible.
  • Dispose of items properly.
    • Place all used gloves, masks, and any personal protective equipment, as well as any used cleaning materials, into a lined container before disposal.
  • Clean and disinfect household.
    • All “high touch” surfaces such should be cleaned and disinfected daily.
    • If sharing a bathroom: The person who is sick should clean and then disinfect after each use. If this is not possible, the caregiver and household member should wait as long as possible before entering the bathroom, clean, and disinfect the bathroom before use.
    • Increase ventilation by opening windows.
  • Additional recommendations and tips can be found at: Caring for Someone Sick at Home (or Other Non-healthcare Settings)


We must work together to protect our families, our friends and our communities from the spread of COVID-19.