SAN LUIS VALLEY – Tuesday, Nov. 24, COVID-19 active cases in the SLV were 247. As of Dec. 2, active cases in the Valley’s five counties decreased from 258 to 254 during the past week. Statewide the 7-day positivity rate increased to 11.63% over the past week. Wednesday, Dec 2, San Luis Valley Public Health Partnership reported that the SLV two-week positivity rate had dropped from 11.3% to 6.03% and is approaching the 5% threshold set by the World Health Organization.
Friday, Nov. 27, Rio Grande County joined Conejos, Mineral, and Costilla counties and moved to level “Orange” on the state’s COVID-19 dial. Alamosa County remains at level “Red” and Saguache County remains at level “Yellow.”
Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) reserves the right to move a county to a more restrictive level at any point, should circumstances warrant more aggressive restrictions. Where possible and reasonable, CDPHE officials see value in keeping SLV on one level, given that the health care system functions to serve the entire region, and the county residents frequently move between counties for work and other reasons.
The San Luis Valley Public Health Partnership stated Monday, Nov. 20, “Unfortunately, deaths and hospitalizations have increased recently. We are sorry to report that there have been 5 COVID-related deaths in the San Luis Valley in the past week (1 in Alamosa County, 1 in Costilla County, 1 in Saguache County, 1 in Conejos County, and 1 in Rio Grande County). Since the pandemic began, there have been 25 COVID-related deaths of San Luis Valley residents. Our hearts go out to every family who has lost someone to this virus. Hospitalizations for COVID-19 were very low in August and September, but they began to rise in October. We have had 93 local COVID-19 hospitalizations so far, with 24% (22) of those just in the past two weeks.”
According to the CDPHE, COVID-19 dial dashboard, all counties in the SLV saw a significant decrease in the positivity rate of tests conducted. Among the SLV counties on Dec. 2 Rio Grande County had the lowest COVID-19 test positivity rate of 3.2% - a decrease of 1.7% from last week. Conejos County dropped from 16.8% to a 9.1% positivity rate, Saguache County dropped from 16.7% to 11.3%, Alamosa County dropped from 14.5% to 7.0%, Costilla County decreased from 13.2% to 6.8% and Mineral County went from 8.8% to a 5.6% positivity rate.
There were 254 known active cases in the SLV Dec. 2. “Active cases” means that the cases are confirmed positive for COVID-19 and are currently being supported by Public Health during their isolation period. Alamosa County saw the largest increase in active cases with 25 more cases than a week ago. Cases by county were as follows as of Dec. 2:
Rio Grande: 61
According to the Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center Nov. 30, Colorado continues to have a lower seven-day positivity moving average test rate than its neighboring states with an 11.2% positivity rate. All neighboring states saw an increase in test positivity rates over the past week. On Nov. 30 Kansas was had a COVID-19 positivity rate of 38.1%, Wyoming 32.8%, Utah 18.2%, Arizona 20%, Nebraska 13.3% and Oklahoma 20.2%. The Colorado and World Health Organization two-week positivity goal is 5% or lower.