Friday is the end of the year and the end of Missouri’s COVID-19 state of emergency.
The “Show Me” state’s Governor, Republican Mike Parson, Thursday announced it was time to end the state of emergency that began March 13, 2020.
“Thanks to the effectiveness of the vaccine, widespread efforts to mitigate the virus and our committed health care professionals, past needs to continue the state of emergency are no longer present,” Governor Parson said. “We all now know how to best fight and prevent serious illness from this virus.”
“The State stands ready to provide assistance and response, but there is no longer a need for a state of emergency.”
The governor noted nearly 600 statutory and regulatory waivers were approved across Missouri state government at one point but they have been reduced by nearly 80 percent. Any COVID-19 related waivers that remain on the books will expire December 31. That also means the state’s National Guard troops will no longer be deployed for COVID-19 missions.
Missouri’s action stands in stark contrast to several Northeast states who have enacted new mask and/or vaccine requirements and deploy Guard troops in COVID-19 medical relief efforts.
New York Governor Kathy Hochul, a Democrat, has dispatched more than one hundred National Guard medical teams to long-term care facility locations across the state, in December. According to a CNN report, she is considering sending more guard members to upstate hospitals. About 50 hospitals in northern New York had less than 10 percent bed capacity due — in large part — to staff shortages, according to CNN.
Democrat Janet Mills, Maine’s Governor, deployed Maine National Guard members to ten health care facilities across the state in December to hospitals experiencing capacity challenges. An executive statement added they were needed to maintain access to inpatient health care for Maine people amid a sustained surge of COVID-19.
“In Missouri, we never had mandates or forced lockdowns,” said Parson. “The main focus of our state of emergency was to provide regulatory flexibility to support and assist Missourians, health care facilities and businesses, and coordinate a COVID-19 response that saved lives and livelihoods. We encourage all Missourians to consider COVID-19 vaccination and to stay diligent, but we can work together to fight COVID-19 while living our normal lives.”
“It is time to take this final step and move forward as a state,” concluded Parson.
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