State health officials announced Sunday that Missouri now has 2,367 confirmed COVID-19 cases, along with 34 deaths.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS) announced the updated numbers Sunday afternoon. The numbers have increased from Saturday’s number of 2,291 cases and 24 deaths.

Governor Mike Parson speaks at the Missouri Capitol in Jefferson City on April 4, 2020 (photo courtesy of the governor’s Flicker page)

Governor Mike Parson (R) notes about 27,173 people have been tested, and that the state’s total population is about six million.

During Friday’s announcement, the governor said about 8.5 percent of those tested have been positive and that of those 8.5 percent, about 22 percent have required hospitalization. Governor Parson said Friday that means the remaining 78 percent are recovering at home or have already recovered.

The governor announced Friday evening that he has issued a statewide “Stay Home Missouri” order, which will take effect at 12:01 am Monday and go until April 24.

The governor emphasizes that his order states that Missourians shall avoid leaving their homes unless necessary. He also notes the order still allows you to access essential services such as grocery stores, gas stations and banks. You can also go to work in certain jobs and can recreate outdoors, as long as you maintain appropriate social distancing.

“First and foremost, I want everyone to know that I love this state and the people of this state,” Parson says. “The people of this great state clearly define who were are in Missouri, and as Governor, I have no greater responsibility than to protect the health, well-being, and safety of all Missourians.”

The governor says his order will be observed throughout the state and will be enforced by all local and state health authorities. Governor Parson says all Missourians must make sacrifices, saying “this is about our families, friends, neighbors and the entire state of Missouri.”

House Minority Leader Crystal Quade, D-Springfield, issued a statement on Saturday, saying the governor’s order “does far less than advertised.”

“The order is not at all what was advertised and what health care professionals and Missouri residents had been demanding for weeks. It is so riddled with exemptions that it differs little from the weak and ineffective social distancing directive the administration previously issued, and it formally punts responsibility for imposing stricter measures to local officials,” Quade’s statement reads, in part.

Leader Quade is warning that COVID-19 will continue to spread in Missouri “until the Parson administration takes the strong action the situation requires.”

Meantime, Missouri lawmakers will return to Jefferson City later this week to vote on a key supplemental budget, which includes federal money to fight the COVID-19 pandemic.

The Senate returns on Tuesday morning, and the Missouri House will gavel-in Wednesday at 1 p.m. Senate Majority Leader Caleb Rowden, R-Columbia, and House Majority Floor Leader Rob Vescovo, R-Arnold, have been working with MU Health Care to ensure the safety of state lawmakers to get back inside the Capitol to vote.

Governor Parson’s “Stay Home Missouri” order closes all state office buildings to the public, but the order does not apply to the Missouri Capitol “during meetings or proceedings of the General Assembly.”

The Capitol has been closed to the public, since March 24.

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