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Missouri is experiencing an unprecedented surge in COVID-19 cases, the Missouri Hospital Association said Friday.

Here’s what you need to know about the current situation in Missouri, and what you can do to help.

Delta, omicron and other viruses are all present throughout the state. 

The current surge of COVID-19 cases is happening in tandem with a spike in other illnesses like the flu. Experts believe delta is still the dominant COVID-19 strain in Missouri, and a surge of the highly contagious omicron variant could overwhelm our health care systems.

Here’s what you can do: If you start to feel sick, get tested as soon as possible, using one of Missouri’s testing options including regional drive-thru testing sites, local pharmacies and self collection tests

Emergency rooms are not the most efficient COVID-19 testing sites. To help hospitals effectively manage the COVID-19 surge and care for all patients experiencing life-threatening emergencies, use one of the testing options listed above if symptoms are not severe, the association said.


Vaccines remain the best tool in preventing severe illness and hospitalization from COVID-19, including against new variants. Mask wearing and distancing from others, especially in public indoor settings, helps prevent the spread of the virus.

Here’s what you can do: Get vaccinated and boosted as soon as you’re eligible. Mask up to protect yourself and others.


Local hospitals are facing significant staffing shortages. Lack of staff to care for patients, matched with large numbers of patients and overcrowded emergency rooms is straining the healthcare system.

Here’s what you can do: All healthcare staff are working under extremely stressful conditions. Be kind, and do what you can to show your appreciation for their tireless work to care for Missouri patients, the association said in a press release.

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