Chaffee County Public Health Director Andrea Carlstrom addressed the recently diagnosed COVID-19 positive case at Columbine Manor Care Center in her Monday daily update.
Carlstrom said the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is assisting in investigation of that case and providing Columbine Manor with resources and support along with CCPH.
Regarding the three known cases in Chaffee County, Carlstrom said, “As our investigations continue we’ll be disclosing appropriate and relevant case information details related to the cases and we’ll continue to protect the identities of those who tested positive, and we will be reaching out to those who have come into contact with them.”
The weekend testing site at Chaffee County Fairgrounds set up by the state health department and National Guard “clearly did not meet the expectations of our community,” Carlstrom said.
She said CCPH is working to make sure those who qualified for testing but were turned away at the site Saturday receive tests.
“We regretfully acknowledge that there were shortcomings of Saturday’s event,” she said.
Carlstrom said the tight turnaround and requirement of receiving a doctor’s order “really got in the way of ensuring that those who needed testing got it.”
She said the county public health department will be working with the state in the future to ensure that never happens again in Chaffee County.
Because of multiple testing channels throughout the county, Carlstrom said CCPH is no longer able to accurately share information on number of people tested, negative tests and pending tests. However, the department will continue to announce the number of positive tests as that information becomes available.
The most recent public health orders issued during the weekend include all nonessential services and short-term lodging operations remaining closed except for emergencies approved by CCPH or those that fall within the governor’s executive issued order over the weekend.
Carlstrom reiterated the most important non-pharmaceutical intervention against COVID-19 is to practice distancing, isolation and quarantine.
“We are asking all of you, especially community leaders, to take this seriously,” she said.
Carlstrom addressed outdoor recreation while practicing social distancing.
“Please do not congregate in crowds, only recreate with your immediate family. Maintain a 6-foot distance with all non-family members. This includes activities at parks, paved trails, dirt trails, on bikes, while walking, you name it,” she said.
Carlstrom emphasized children are advised not to congregate together and families are advised to avoid playground equipment.
While CCPH has been working with municipalities on proper sanitation of playground equipment, CCPH recommends avoiding it at this time.
Carlstrom said CCPH had been updating information via the Chaffee County website and social media and has also posted community boards throughout the county so those who are not on the internet have access to information.
She said the department is working closely with the media to ensure both print and online news sources have the most accurate information.