COVID-19 & Ava: Community Guide to Changes, Cancellations, Restrictions

by Michael Boyink / mike@douglascountyherald.com

Editor’s note: The information below is the most complete and current guide we could create while working within our publishing schedule. 

Between how fast the coronavirus situation is changing and the delays inherent in publishing a newspaper, some of our information is sure to be out of date. Please check with a business or organization first for updates before interacting with them.

If you represent a business or organization not mentioned below and have coronavirus-related changes to announce please let the Herald know.

Medical Services

Hospitals/Clinics:

Cox Health

March 26:
Only accepting hospital patient visits in limited areas including end of life care, ICUs, NICU, Pediatrics, Child Psych, Labor and Delivery, etc. 

March 19:

  • CoxHealth has posted visitor restrictions, effective March 14th. Patients can only have one visitor per day, no visitors with suspected COVID-19 will be admitted, and no one under the age of 18 (except for those seeking medical care).
  • Cox has canceled or postponed most events happening on its campuses, including all classes through the Women’s Center, the Baby Affair, and classes at the Center for Health Improvement.
  • Cox is offering free virtual examinations for COVID-19 at     bit.ly/2x1Kb5Y, use COVID as a code. Cox warned of longer than normal wait times due to volume –  stay on the line to hold your place.
  • Cox will also be postponing non-urgent surgeries in the coming weeks.
  • Updates can be found online at coxhealth.com/newsroom.

Mercy Hospital & Clinics

March 26:
Only accepting hospital patient visits in limited areas including end of life care, ICUs, NICU, Pediatrics, Child Psych, Labor and Delivery, etc. 

March 19: Mercy has posted several updates in response to the pandemic:

  • In-person prenatal classes are canceled.
  • Patients can have one visitor per day. 
  • No one under the age of 18 will be allowed in Mercy Hospitals or clinics unless they are seeking medical treatment.
  • Mercy has created a separate waiting and treatment area for people with COVID-19 symptoms. 
  • Mercy will also be postponing non-urgent surgeries in the coming weeks.

Updates can be found online at mercy.net/newsroom.

Prime Care

March 19: Prime Care has implemented the following restrictions:

  • Patients only allowed in office, unless minor or compromised requiring caregiver. 
  • Family members of patients must stay at home or in their car.
  • Patients must notify staff immediately if they are at risk or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. 
  • Acutely ill patients are asked to wait in their car and check in via telephone.

Nursing Homes

March 19: Both Ava Place and Heart of the Ozarks are following guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (MDHSS)and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) which include:

  • Limiting entry to only individuals that need entry. 
  • Actively screening individuals entering the building and forbidding entry to those with COVID-19 symptoms. 
  • Require all individuals entering the building to wash hands at entry.

Both facilities have “send a greeting” functions available on their websites that allow friends and family to send messages to residents: avaplace.net and heartoftheozarkshealthcare.com.

Douglas County Health Department

March 26: Has suspended certain services at this time. If you have questions about whether a particular service is available, please call us at 417-683-4174.

MOCH Wellness Center & Gym

March 26: Closed until May.

March 19:The Missouri Ozarks Community Health (MOCH) center has canceled all rentals and open gym events, dental appointments may be affected, but workout facilities remain open for use. 

Eye Care:

March 19: At Ozarks Family Vision Centre it’s “business as usual taking extra precautions with continued cleanliness and sterilization.”

Dentist:

March 26: Scott Mason, DDS is not seeing patients this week.

March 19: Scott Mason, DDS is on vacation so no patients are scheduled this week. Staff will be meeting on Friday to determine how to manage upcoming visits.

Schools:

Ava R-1

March 26:

  • Teachers posting schoolwork online weekly.
  • Meals and schoolwork for students w/o internet access delivered Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
  • Food available daily for pickup from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.
  • High School building closed to visitors.
  • Free or discounted internet service available – contact the school for details.
  • Offering childcare for parents employed in first-responder, medical or public safety-related jobs.
  • International testing dates rescheduled.

March 19:

  • According to an email from Superintendent Dr. Jason Dial, Ava R-1 Schools will extend Spring Break through Friday, April 3rd. The postponement includes “all extra- and co-curricular activities, including athletic competitions, practices, and after-school programs and events.”
  • Dial said the school would continue to provide information regarding Meal Service, Child Care, and Instructional Plans in the coming days. 
  • ACT Testing has been rescheduled from April 4th to June 13th. Registered students should receive an email with details.

For the latest updates visit the school’s Facebook Page: facebook.com/Ava-R-1-Schools-228524657175875/

Plainview

March 26: Delivering schoolwork if parents can’t pick it up.

March 19:

  • On March 16th, the Plainview school district announced that it would extend Spring Break through Friday, April 3rd with classes resuming on Monday, April 6th.
  • The school promised updates regarding meal service and instructional plans.

For updates, check the school’s Facebook page: facebook.com/Plainview-School-215250408628733/

Skyline

March 26:

  • Providing grab and go meals while school is closed.
  • Free Breakfast and lunch on Monday, Wednesday and Friday.

March 19:
According to a school representative, Skyline Schools will be closed from Wednesday, March 17 – April 3rd with classes resuming April 6th.

The school is trying to get curriculum packets together for students, and is also working out meal issues.

Thornfield

March 19:  According to the Ozark County Times, “Thornfield School has announced that it will extend its current spring break through April 3, with classes resuming Monday, April 6.”

Missouri State High School Activities Association (MSHSAA)

March 19:  According to an email from Dr. Kerwin Urhahn, MSHSAA Executive Director, the following events have been canceled:

  • State Speech, Debate, and Theatre Championships
  • Incomplete district events
  • Music Festival
  • Remaining district solo/small ensemble, large group, and state solo/small ensemble festivals.
  • Additionally the Scholar Bowl, not planned to begin until April 18, is in a “wait and see mode.”
  • As of this point the organization isn’t canceling spring sports championships, or all the spring sports. 

Updates can be found online at: mshsaa.org.

Local First Responders

March 26: https://douglascountyherald.com/2020/03/covid-19-response/

March 19: Local first responders, sheriff’s office, and school representatives and the Douglas County Health Department will be meeting on Wednesday, March 18th at 6:00 p.m. to discuss the county-level response to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Court System

44th Judicial Court

March 26: Attorney-Client meetings online via Zoom. Hearings conducted online via Polycom. 

March 19: According to a press release on March 16th, The Supreme Court of Missouri suspended (with certain exceptions) all in-person proceedings in “all appellate and circuit courts, including all associate, family, juvenile, municipal, and probate divisions through Friday, April 3rd.” 

The designated exceptions include – but aren’t limited to:

  • Emergency child custody orders
  • Temporary restraining orders
  • Emergency mental health orders
  • Time-sensitive matters
  • Trials already in progress.

The full list of exceptions can be viewed at courts.mo.gov.

Businesses

Banks:

Great Southern

March 26: Use online banking tools or drive-through facilities. 

Stockman’s Bank 

March 26: Drive-through only.

Home Pride Bank

March 26: Drive through only.

Century Bank

March 26: Drive through only.

Manufacturers:

Emerson 

March 26:

  • Some office workers working from home.
  • Limiting non-essential travel.
  • Prohibiting in-person meetings of more than 10 people.
  • Limiting or eliminating visitors.
  • Providing wage or salary continuation plans to any employees testing positive for COVID-19.

DoCo Sheltered Workshop

March 26:

  • Egg room shut down for at least two weeks.
  • Front lobby closed to visitors.
  • Delivery and freight drivers to remain in their vehicles.

Restaurants:

Archie’s 

March 26: Carry out only, closing time fluctuates based on demand. Call or check their Facebook page

The Barn

March 26: Carry out and delivery only.

Haro Brothers

March 26: Closed until April 7th or until it is safe to reopen.

Hucklebuck BBQ

March 26: Ava location closed, Seymour is drive through only.

Los Mexicanos Mexican

March 26: Take out only.

McDonalds

March 19: Lobby closed to dining, drive-through and take-out orders only.

Oaxaca Mexican

March 26: Take out only.

Pizza Hut

March 19: Take-out and delivery orders only.

Ruby Garden

March 19: Take-out and drive-through only, dining room is closed.

Sonic

March 26: Closed patios, limiting hours.

Subway

March 26: Carry out only.

March 19: The store will open at 10 a.m. rather than 8 a.m.

Taco Bell

March 19: Hours changing – open at 10 a.m., Drive through orders only.

True Brew

March 26: Delivery and take out available.

Retail

Curtis Department Store

March 26: Closed until March 30th.

Douglas County Herald

March 26: Lobby closed.

Dollar General

March 19: According to a press release posted on its website, Dollar General is dedicating the first hour of operations to be dedicated to senior customers. 

“We appreciate our customers’ understanding of our decision and request they visit our stores later in the morning to allow at-risk populations the ability to purchase the items they need at affordable prices,” said Todd Vasos, Dollar General’s CEO. “

Further updates can be viewed online: newscenter.dollargeneral.com/news

On The Square:

Work Horse

March 26: Closing at 4pm this week.

Jean’s Healthway

March 26: New hours: M-F 10-5, Sat 9-2

Audrey’s

March 26: Open until mandated to close

Blondie’s Boutique

March 26: Closed

Simple Kids and Baby

March 26: Closed through 3/29.

Options Pregnancy Center

March 26: Closed

Ava TrueView Family Theater

March 26: Closed.

Hair/Nail Care

Hair Factory

March 26: No walk-ins, no sick customers at all.

Rhonda Williams

March 26: Closed.

Images Hair

March 26: Open to one client at a time.

Gib & Todds

March 26: Closed until further notice.

Churches

Most churches have moved worship services online. Check with yours before heading out. If you haven’t heard from your church before scheduled worship times, visit the church Facebook page or call your pastor before heading out.

Church of the Living God

March 26: Service times will be live broadcasts on Facebook for Sunday mornings and Wednesday night.

Mt. Zion 

March 26: Live streaming Sunday service at 10:45 am and 6pm on Facebook: Mt Zion Church of Holiness.

Sweden Church 

March 26: Suspended all activities until April 4. Weekly sermons can be heard on swedenchurch.com

Community Services

Ava Art Guild

March 26: Closed until further notice.

Douglas County Library

March 19: According to Librarian Anita Dodd, the Douglas County Library will be closed from March 18th through April 6th. 

Materials can still be returned through the bookdrop, and the staff is working on making accommodations for materials returned late due to the shutdown.

Douglas County Veterans Memorial Association

March 26: Tuesday breakfast, Thursday night music, Saturday Bingo all suspended until April 4th.

Douglas County Community Center

March 19: The Community Center is closed at least through the end of the month. Meals are still being delivered.

OATS Transport

March 26: Offering only essential service trips until further notice.

WIC

March 19: According to the Douglas County Health Department, the WIC program is operating as normal, however the DCHD staff request that you only bring the children listed on your WIC folder to appointments.

City Services

March 26:

  • All Missouri municipal elections previously scheduled for April 7, 2020, to be postponed to June 2, 2020.
  • Place all trash in plastic bags for pickup.

County Services

Douglas County Courthouse

March 26: Closed to the public through March 29th.

Douglas County Sheriffs Office

March 26:

  • Main lobby closed.
  • Prescription drop-off closed.

State Services

New Hotline

March 19: The State of Missouri has established a 24/7 hotline for questions or concerns about COVID-19. That number is 877-435-8411. The number will be staffed by medical professionals. 

MoDot

March 19: According to a press release from MoDot, “at the direction of Governor Mike Parsons, the Missouri Department of Transportation today announced an allowance for heavier-than-normal truckloads of supplies and equipment to travel on Missouri highways in the direct effort to prevent, contain, mitigate and treat the effects of the COVID-19 virus. The waiver allows private and for-hire motor carriers to haul up to 10% more than their licensed weight on Missouri Highways.”

Otherwise, according to the MoDot website, the organization “doesn’t see any disruption to the design or construction of the state’s road and bridge projects.”

State Parks

March 26:

  • Visitor centers, park offices and site offices are temporarily closed to walk-in foot traffic through April 30.
  • Day-use areas are open.
  • Trails are open.
  • Boat ramps are open.

March 19: Officials with the Missouri State Parks announced all programs and events will be postponed or canceled through April 30th. Updates can be found online at mostateparks.com/events/park.

State Driving Tests

March 26: All written and driver road testing has been suspended statewide.

March 19: According to a press release from the Missouri State Highway Patrol, driver road testing is suspended statewide through March 31st. 

Written tests will continue with social distancing restrictions imposed. Some written testing locations may be unavailable due to building closures.

The MSHP requests that you refrain from taking a written test if you or any family members are displaying symptoms of COVID-19.

Current information on test sites can be found at:

mshp.dps.missouri.gov.

State Library

March 19: The Missouri State Library is closed to the public through April 30th. Patrons may still call 573-522-4036 and email: mostlib@sos.mo.gov.

Colleges 

Missouri State University

March 26:

  • Beginning March 30, in-person classes will be provided through alternative means. Students will be contacted by their faculty members prior to March 30 with details for each scheduled course.
  • Residence halls will remain open to those who must be on campus. 
  • Students electing to move out of residence halls will be provided with an opportunity to schedule a specific day/time. 
  • Access to the libraries and computer labs will remain available on a modified schedule. 

March 19: In response to the COVID-19 crisis, MSU has:

  • Restricted domestic and international travel.
  • Extended Spring Break for one week, ending March 27th.
  • Beginning March 30th, all in-person classes will move to alternative delivery.
  • Alternative delivery methods will be used for the remainder of the spring semester.

MSU updates can be found on their Facebook page: facebook.com/missouristateu.

University of Missouri

March 26: All classes will be taught remotely through the end of the spring 2020 semester. 

Drury University

March 26:

  • Classes will remain online through the end of the semester. 
  • Campus housing will close until further notice. 
  • Students who have been away from campus on spring break, regardless of where they have traveled, should NOT return to campus. 

March 19: According an email from the president’s office, Drury is:

  • Canceling all events where more than 250 people were expected
  • Extending Spring Break for one week. 
  • Suspending travel for athletics competitions except for NCAA and GLVC championships.
  • Planning to resume classes  – online and in person – on Monday, March 30th.

See drury.edu/information-regarding-covid-19 for updates.

Truman State

March 19: According to its website, Truman University is not holding classes from March 16-20. It’s not an extension of Spring Break, students should expect to be contacted by their professors with instructions for how to continue classwork during this time.

Updates can be found online at trualert.truman.edu.

College of the Ozarks

March 19: College of the Ozarks has extended Spring Break through March 27.

Events

Glade Top Trail Run

March 19: Normally in April, rescheduled for October 10th.

Republican Women’s Lincoln Day Dinner

March 19: The dinner, originally scheduled for April 3rd, is postponed. The new date is TBD.

Local Elections

According to Missouri Secretary of State John Ashcroft, “We have been actively planning and discussing different scenarios that may occur over the next several weeks.”

Democratic Meeting

March 19: The Democratic County Level Mass Meeting set for April 6th has been canceled.

Ava Chamber of Commerce Banquet

March 26: Ava Chamber of Commerce April Luncheon canceled. Office closed to the public.

March 19: The Ava Chamber of Commerce Banquet originally scheduled for April 4th has been canceled.

Ava Growers Project

March 19: The annual meeting for the Ava Growers Project has been canceled.  Election of the board will be conducted by mail and email. The opening date of the Ava Farmer’s Market is delayed until further notice.