The state health department on Sunday strongly recommended that residents and visitors to Eagle, Summit, Pitkin and Gunnison counties minimize contacts with other people to slow the spread of COVID-19.
“Anyone who has been in Eagle, Summit, Pitkin, or Gunnison counties in the past week should minimize all contact with other people, whether or not they are experiencing symptoms,” a news release issued Sunday from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment stated.
Anyone experiencing symptoms – cough, fever, and shortness of breath – should be isolated for at least seven to 10 days after the onset of symptoms. It is only safe to leave isolation if symptoms are improving and no fever is detected for 72 hours immediately prior to the end of isolation, according to CDPHE.
Isolation may be longer for individuals who have more severe illness or who work in high-risk occupations like health care.
According to the news release, “Community transmission is likely increasing across the state, so these measures are important to implement everywhere but are particularly urgent for residents and visitors of mountain communities that are already experiencing high rates of community transmission.”
The CDPHE recommends that residents and visitors of the affected communities take the following actions:
Stay home as much as possible.Work from home if possible; if you can’t work from home, maintain at least 6 feet of distance between you and coworkers or customers.Only go to public spaces for necessities such as groceries and the pharmacy.Continue healthy, nongroup activities like walking, hiking, jogging, cycling and other activities that maintain distance from other people.Don’t gather in group settings.Avoid mass gatherings.Maintain distance of 6 feet from others.If anyone must travel, he or she should use a private vehicle instead of taking buses, rideshares, flights, or other transportation that brings contact with other people.Continue to operate critical business functions, such as delivery of goods and operation of businesses, with social distancing and additional safety measures in place.Currently, there are at least 18 positive COVID-19 cases from people who have spent time in Eagle County, 13 in Pitkin County, six in Gunnison County, and three in Summit County. Many additional tests are pending, and it is likely there is sustained community transmission of COVID-19 in these areas.
“We’re seeing extensive outbreaks in these communities,” said Rachel Herlihy, state epidemiologist with the CDPHE. “We are asking people to take this voluntary action to slow the spread of the disease in Colorado and keep people safe. If we do this now, our hope is that we can slow down the spread of this virus and lessen the potential stress on our health care systems and workers.”