SAN LUIS VALLEY - Today there are two new cases for Alamosa County and four new cases for Saguache County, bringing the SLV total case number to 69. Twenty-one total cases have completed isolation. Numbers are updated weekdays on slvemergency.org/slv-covid-19/.
Testing is critical to moving forward and opening up, at a local, state, and national level. In that regard, we have good news. The SLV Healthcare Coalition Testing Task Force is working diligently to increase the rate of testing in the Valley. There have been 562 COVID-19 test samples taken in the San Luis Valley so far, nearly double where we were at the end of April. More testing supplies have recently become available through private and government channels, and testing criteria has been expanded. Planning is underway to offer even more diagnostic testing in the community. The Testing Task Force includes representatives from SLV Health, Rio Grande Hospital, Valley-Wide Health Systems, and Public Health. Public Health follow-up, investigation, and contact tracing go hand-in-hand with successful testing efforts. Look for more information about testing and other regional data in future updates.
At the beginning of this response, the six local San Luis Valley public health departments came together to coordinate public messaging, along with other elements of the response. This was both for alignment across the region, as well as to maximize limited resources. These daily briefings are occurring through the platform of SLV Emergency. We would like to remind everyone that the primary role of SLVEmergency in this pandemic response is simply to provide consistent, accurate information to the public on behalf of Public Health agencies, and other healthcare partners, in the San Luis Valley. SLV Emergency also helps pass on critical information from other partners, such as red flag warnings for dangerous fire conditions, or other pertinent emergency preparedness and response information for people in the region.
This pandemic is a crisis, and during crises and other disasters, it is easy to lose sight of the big picture and remember that it will not last forever. A regional Public Health staff member would like to offer this encouraging note:
“During the long days working to get out accurate, reliable public information, and in acknowledgment of Mental Health Awareness month, I have been trying to focus on daily self-care. One of my practices is to take a walk with my dogs in my neighborhood. I try to notice new developments to help me stay mindful and not focus too much on work awaiting me. This can be difficult at times. Yesterday, as I noted the green bursting out of the trees and pink crabapple blooms, I heard my first Yellow Warbler of the season. I know Yellow Warblers are late spring migrants, and to me, indicate Summer is on its way. Poet Emily Dickinson noted, ‘Hope is the thing with feathers.’ It was easy for me to conclude that despite the hard season of uncertainty we are currently in, indeed, summer and better things to come are on the horizon.”
For general SLV COVID-19 questions, please call (719) 480-8719 or e-mail us at [email protected].