Kansas Organizations Launch Effort to Stop the Spread of COVID-19 in Kansas


(Nov. 23, 2020) – Stop the Spread Kansas is a public awareness campaign urging Kansans to do their part in slowing the rate of COVID-19 infections across the state. Stakeholders are encouraging Kansans to follow the Centers for Disease Control guidelines, avoid mass gatherings, use face coverings and other measures to preserve precious health care resources.

Campaign partners include the Kansas Hospital Association, Kansas Chamber, Kansas Farm Bureau and the Kansas Medical Society. Additional organizations are likely to join the statewide effort that will begin before Thanksgiving.

“Hospitals across the state are facing significant capacity and staffing constraints because of increased COVID-19 spread, and this campaign will help ensure the normal standards of care Kansans expect will be preserved,” said KHA President and CEO Chad Austin. “All mitigation efforts taken over these next several weeks will be critical to keeping Kansas businesses, schools and other services safely open.”

Kansans can access campaign resources, industry-specific toolkits and guidance from the CDC and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment at The landing page will provide numerous communications resources over the next few weeks to help Kansans spread the word, not the virus.

“The Kansas business community is committed to the health and safety of employees and customers. Companies small and large across the state have requirements and protocols in place regarding facemasks and other measures that allow for social distancing and additional cleaning. However, we need all Kansans taking these voluntary actions. It will make a tremendous difference and reduce the pressure on our health care system. We encourage all Kansans to do their part to stop the spread of this virus,” said Alan Cobb, president and CEO of the Kansas Chamber.

Stop the Spread Kansas hopes to ignite a sense of unity, community and responsibility. The campaign will employ grassroots outreach and advertising to encourage all Kansans 18 and older to make the changes necessary to save lives. The most important aspect is educating citizens on the four tools they can use to stop the spread of COVID-19:

  • Wearing a mask
  • Washing your hands often
  • Keeping a safe distance
  • Avoiding large gatherings

“It’s imperative we use every tool at our disposal to stop the spread of COVID-19 in Kansas. We must act quickly to alleviate strain on our hospital systems so our schools, businesses and communities can continue safely operating. I encourage all Kansans to avoid large gatherings and practice social distancing. When that’s not possible, please wear a mask to help keep Kansas open,” said Rich Felts, Kansas Farm Bureau president.

By using these measures, especially during the holiday season, Kansans can show they are taking responsibility for protecting their communities. These small sacrifices will ensure our health care system and hospitals have the staff and resources necessary to provide live-saving care when needed. Slowing the spread also allows our schools, businesses and communities to safely remain open.

“Clearly COVID-19 is now infecting more Kansans than ever. Physicians and other frontline health care workers across the state are working tirelessly to help those who contract the virus get well again—all while they continue to care for patients with other needs. To reduce the spread of COVID-19, Kansas physicians encourage everyone to wear a mask and practice safe social distancing,” said Rachelle Colombo, Kansas Medical Society executive director.

Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2021 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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