Park County COVID-19 Cases Rise 144% in 5 Days | Big Horn Basin Media

Park County COVID-19 Cases Rise 144% in 5 Days

Written by on October 13, 2020

The continuing uptick of confirmed cases suggests community transmission of the virus in Park County.

Park County Public Health Officier Dr Aaron Billin confirmed the increase in one of his weekly Facebook updates. Park County’s confirmed cases rose from 36 last Thursday, October 8, to 88 on Tuesday morning. This increases the total number of confirmed cases in Park County from 315 to 380, a 21% increase in the same five-day period.

This continues an unsettling trend of COVID-19 cases. There were only 27 actives cases on September 28th.

As of Tuesday morning, there were 40 active COVID-19 cases in Cody and 34 in Powell.

NEW CASES IN PARK COUNTYIn the last 5 days active cases are up 144% (from 36 to 88) and total cumulative cases are up…

Posted by Park County Wyoming Health Officer on Monday, October 12, 2020

Billin says this increase is due to Park County, rather than outside forces. The rising number of confirmed cases suggests the cause is community transmission in Park County, rather than people contracting the virus elsewhere and bringing it back with them. Despite this, Billin sees people continuing to gather without wearing masks or practicing social distancing.

This is directly contributing to the faster spread of the virus.

Stateside, Wyoming no longer has the nation’s highest effective reproduction number. The state is currently in 4th place with a rate of 1.23%. That’s a slight improvement from the 1.27% reported on October 2, but the goal is to be less than 1.0%.

Billin also took the opportunity to address the state of COVID-19 transmission in Park County’s schools. In short: there doesn’t appear to be any — for the moment.

While confirmed cases continue to show up in Park County’s schools, contact tracing on students and staff hasn’t revealed any evidence of community transmission in schools. All the confirmed cases have come from outside sources.

The greatest threat to creating community transmission, as Billin sees it, is parents sending their sick kids to school. While there are several different infections common to schools in the fall and winter – colds, strep throat, bronchitis, and others – they all share similar symptoms with COVID-19.

It’s best to not underestimate childhood illnesses at this time. Sending a COVID-19 positive kid to school increases the chances of community transmission in schools, which endangers in-person classes and extracurriculars.

Billin advises parents to keep sick children at home, rather than risk the health of their peers and teachers in school.

Cody Regional Health continues to offer drive-thru testing for COVID-19 at the Cody Stampede Rodeo Grounds at 8 a.m. Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays on a first-come, first-serve basis.

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