Wyoming Governor: COVID-19 Situation ‘Extremely Concerning”
Written by Andrew-Rossi on October 5, 2020
Wyoming Governor Mark Gordon has enlisted the Wyoming National Guard to temporarily assist with contact tracing in order to reverse a status that is “extremely concerning.”
The Wyoming National Guard will be providing this assistance to the Wyoming Department of Health. Gordon made this decision due to the “significantly higher” number of cases throughout the state.
“Here in Wyoming, when a few weeks ago our experience seemed to be going so well, vigilance seemed to slide a little bit,” the governor said during Monday’s conference, live-streamed on Wyoming PBS. “But now, we have seen some very serious deterioration in conditions. We are trending in the wrong direction both in new cases and in hospitalizations.”
Since the beginning of the pandemic, health officials have warned that one of the most serious consequences of the pandemic is hospitals being overloaded with COVID and non-COVID patients Dr. Alexia Harrist acknowledged this scenario is currently playing out in Billings.
“The largest hospitals in Billings — where many Wyoming patients are frequently treated — has been forced to add beds in another, older building and has been transferring some patients back to Wyoming for care,” Harrist said during the press conference.
The governor acknowledged that Wyoming was nationally one of the four least restricted states, one of the three states with the lowest rates of infection, and the lowest COVID-19 mortality.
Now, everything is surging:
- Wyoming is averaging 98 cases per day — the most since the pandemic began.
- Four Wyoming counties have over 100 active cases as of Monday afternoon.
- Hospitalizations are the highest they’ve been since the pandemic began.
“This does not bode well for us,” the governor said.
He characterized his own words as “a serious call to action” to prevent the current scenario from becoming worse.
Health officials are asking everyone to maintain six feet of social distancing from other people whenever possible, wear a face mask when social distancing is not possible, and frequently wash your hands.
Anyone who is sick or displaying COVID-19 symptoms is asked to stay at home.