For the seven-day period between 11/21-11/27/21 a total of 21 Gunnison County residents tested positive for COVID-19. While this appears to be a significant decline in positive tests, it is likely an incomplete picture due to lags in test data reporting and limited testing associated with the Thanksgiving holiday. Throughout the course of the pandemic, we have seen artificial declines in case rates in the period immediately before and after holidays. In the past, these declines in the reported data did not reflect real conditions of transmission in the community.
With that in mind, we ask our community to remain aware of the spread of COVID-19 in our community. Following the Thanksgiving holiday, identifying and containing infections is crucial to minimizing the continued spread of COVID-19 in our community.
If you are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 we encourage you to seek testing and isolate until you have a result. If you have been exposed to a known positive COVID-19 case, please seek testing and monitor for symptoms. Those who are unvaccinated should quarantine after exposure. More information is available on our Community Resources page.
Easily accessible COVID-19 testing continues through a partnership with GVH. One of the simplest ways to schedule a test is to use the online platform to self-register. If you would like to schedule a test you can complete the process at https://my.primary.health/l/gvh. Please note, the saliva testing process takes a bit longer than a nasal swab and the process may take 5-10 minutes for some individuals. No eating or drinking (including water, coffee, gum or anything of the kind) for 30 minutes prior to your saliva test.
Not only does timely testing for people with symptoms (and known exposures) help contain the spread of COVID-19, it is also crucial for deploying monoclonal antibody (mAb) treatments. Monoclonal antibody treatments are a tool that can help limit severe disease and hospitalization in specific populations who test positive for COVID-19. While monoclonal antibody treatments are not available to all individuals, many of those with underlying risks for more severe disease are eligible. This includes people with the following risk factors:
- People who are 65 years old or older.
- People who are obese or overweight. This includes adults with a BMI of 25 or more. It also includes children age 12 to 17 who have a BMI in the 85th percentile or higher for their age and gender based on CDC growth charts.
- Pregnant people.
- People with certain underlying medical conditions.
Should you test positive for COVID-19 and believe you might be eligible for monoclonal antibody treatments, please contact your primary care physician about a referral. Monoclonal antibody treatments are available through Gunnison Valley Health. Also, the State of Colorado has made monoclonal antibody treatments available through a series of busses. More information on the schedule of the mAb busses can be found here.
Despite regional and statewide challenges with hospital capacity, Gunnison Valley Health continues stable operations. In recent weeks, individuals with COVID-19 continue to be treated appropriately or transferred based on their level of illness. Statewide, hospitalizations for COVID-19 continue at the highest rates of the year. Currently, more than 1,500 individuals are hospitalized with COVID-19 statewide. Of hospitalized individuals in Colorado, 82% are unvaccinated.
Current statewide data from CDPHE shows that fully-vaccinated individuals are 9.8x less likely to be hospitalized for COVID-19 and 10.6x less likely to die from COVID-19.
Booster doses are now widely available for all three COVID-19 vaccines. Booster doses can be obtained where COVID-19 vaccines are available. Locally they are available through some private providers, pharmacies at City Market, Clark’s, and Walmart. Appointments can also be scheduled at Gunnison County Public Health.
Those who received a two-dose series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine with the second dose at least six-months ago can receive a booster. Individuals who received a dose of Johnson & Johnson at least two-months ago are also eligible to receive a booster as well.
Gunnison County will be offering COVID-19 vaccination clinics on the following dates and times:
- Tuesday 11/30 @ Gunnison Community School from 3:30-5:30pm (Pediatric)
- Thursday 12/2 @ Fred Field from 3:30-5:30pm
- Thursday 12/9 @ Crested Butte Community School from 3:30-5:30pm (Pediatric)
After December 9th, there will not be any community clinics for the remainder of the month. If you need to schedule a booster shot or get your children vaccinated, you will want to consult the resources found on our Vaccine Resources page.
If you plan to attend a vaccine clinic please wear a mask. If you are getting a booster, please bring documentation of your previous COVID-19 vaccination.
It’s important for all county residents to continue to take actions to protect themselves as individuals and the larger community including:
- Get vaccinated if you are eligible (ages 5 years and older), be sure to complete the entire vaccination series.
- Assure best ventilation for all interactions including, outdoor spaces, outdoor air circulation and air filtration as needed.
- Monitor for COVID-19 symptoms, isolate if you experience symptoms. Stay home if you are sick and away from others as much as possible.
- Get tested if you have COVID-19 symptoms
- Wear a mask if unvaccinated in all indoor settings, especially where distancing is not possible. The Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) recommends all persons (regardless of vaccination status) wear a mask in indoor settings. This is particularly important in large indoor gatherings.
- Wash your hands frequently and avoid contact with your face, especially eyes and mouth.
Please visit: https://covid19.gunnisoncounty.org for information on where to obtain a COVID-19 vaccination or testing.