Dear Editor:

As former directors of Chaffee County Public Health, we express our gratitude to the public health employees who have worked tirelessly to protect the health and wellbeing of Chaffee County residents and tourists. 

COVID-19 is the most serious global crisis since the 1918 flu pandemic. 

In the U.S., there have been more than 10 million cases and 241,000 deaths due to COVID-19. 

The challenge to public health professionals and the medical community is overwhelming, especially in rural communities where healthcare infrastructure, healthcare providers, and access to health care may be limited.

Since March 2020, Chaffee County Public Health Director, Andrea Carlstrom, and her staff have worked collaboratively with our rural community healthcare partners and followed state public health COVID-19 directives.

Their dedicated efforts have kept our county’s positivity rate below the state level. This is a remarkable achievement!

As we head into the holiday and winter season, there will be future challenges for all of us. 

To reduce the transmission of this highly contagious infection, we urge all residents to adhere to the recommendations of the public health department. 

Ms. Carlstrom and her staff have proven to be extremely capable and knowledgeable so please place your trust in them. 

The pandemic has added a tremendous amount of work for our public health staff. 

During this time, they have continued their usual public health work promoting community health through a variety of programs.

In this time of Thanksgiving, we encourage support for our public health team. We are very fortunate to have them working on our behalf. 

Please join us in thanking them for their dedication to ensure the health of our residents. 

We are also grateful to our county commissioners who have acknowledged the expertise of these professionals and have supported their work. 

Susan Ellis RN 

Marilyn Bouldin RN

Salida