With just two cases announced this week through Tuesday night, recoveries are starting to outpace new cases of COVID-19 in Park County, which has the fifth highest number of active cases in the state.
The county has added four confirmed cases and one probable case since July 8.
Also Monday, Gov. Mark Gordon extended the state public health orders through the end of the month.
The county’s number of active cases is at 44 (probable and confirmed), with two hospitalized, Park County Public Health Officer Dr. Aaron Billin said Tuesday night. One of those is in Billings.
While the notice of a 92-year-old Meeteetse woman who died Sunday mentioned she had COVID-19, it was not added to the count of deaths related to the virus.
“Whether Wyoming resident deaths are added to the state’s coronavirus-related death total is based on official death certificate information,” the state health department said in a recent release. “Death certificates reflect whether COVID-19 caused or contributed to the person’s death according to medical opinion. If the disease neither caused nor contributed to the person’s death, that person’s death is not reflected in Wyoming’s count of coronavirus-related deaths even if the person is known to be positive for the virus.”
Park County has had 80 confirmed cases and nine probable cases since March, the most in the Big Horn Basin. Washakie County has 38, three hospitalized, as well as five deaths. Big Horn County has 26 cases.
There have been 22 deaths related to COVID-19 in the state. The latest announced Tuesday was an elderly Sweetwater County man with conditions that put him at higher risk, the Wyoming Department of Health announced.
A recovery is defined as occurring when a patient goes for three days without a fever and sees improvement in respiratory problems.
Testing is recommended for all close contacts of confirmed or probable COVID-19 patients.
Drive-thru testing is available at both Cody Regional Health and Powell Valley Healthcare.
Public health orders
Wyoming’s current public health orders will be extended through July 31 as the state continues to see increasing numbers of COVID-19 cases, Gordon announced.
Over the past 14 days, Wyoming has averaged 27 lab-confirmed cases of COVID-19 per day, with 342 new cases confirmed since July 1. From June 15-30, there were 328 lab-confirmed cases reported. On July 13, the number of COVID-19 hospitalizations reported by Wyoming hospitals was 17, the most hospitalizations reported since April 22.
While the total number of tests completed has continued to grow in Wyoming, the percentage of tests that come back positive for COVID-19 has remained steady with a cumulative total average of 2.9%.
“I’m disappointed again that we continue to see case numbers rise,” Gordon said. “Wyoming residents only need to look at what Texas, Florida and Arizona are experiencing to see how much damage being careless, not wearing a mask, and failing to social distance can cause to our state’s economy, our citizens’ health and our healthcare system. I am encouraged to see many of our businesses taking this responsibility seriously and both requiring staff and urging customers to wear face coverings.”
The Wyoming Department of Health and the governor continue to strongly recommend the use of face coverings in public settings where it is not possible or reasonable to stay physically apart. On Wyoming’s COVID-19 dashboard the number of new cases continues to be rated “Concerning.”