COLORADO SPRINGS — With so much information being announced daily about the COVID-19 pandemic, here is a review and preview of what is going on in Southern Colorado as it pertains to the virus:
El Paso County moved to Safer at Home: Level 3 on the state COVID-19 last Friday. The move follows recent increases in COVID-19 case rates, test positivity, and hospitalizations.
The CDPHE had given the county until 5 p.m. on Friday, Nov. 13 to implement necessary changes.
Pueblo County Department of Public Health officials announced last Thursday that the county would be moving into the "high risk" level on the state COVID-19 dial Saturday.
The move to a more restrictive level means the county will lose its variances, which could result in the closure of some businesses. Other businesses may have further limits or restrictions on capacity. In the "high risk" level, capacity is set at 25%.
On Friday, Nov. 13, Teller County officials were notified by the Colorado Department of Health and Environment (CDPHE) that the county will be moving from Yellow to Orange in the Safer at Home category on the state COVID-19 dial.
According to Teller County, incident rates are:
- two-week cumulative incidence rate: 493/100,000 people
- Percent positivity: 11.6%
- Two-week COVID-19 case count (new cases): 125
Changes must be in place by 5 p.m. on Monday, Nov. 16.
El Paso County officials are launching an educational campaign as cases of COVID-19 continue to rise.
The county said #SmallActs, the campaign kicking off Monday, will encourage residents to perform small acts "that can make a big impact on stopping the spread of the coronavirus cases."
Gov. Jared Polis discussed COVID-19 vaccines and extended the statewide mask mandate for another 30 days.
This follows Thursday's press conference where Colorado’s state epidemiologist said that she believes coronavirus is circulating at its highest levels yet in the state as hospitalizations here have also topped their April high point.
Many local school districts have made the decision to return to online learning for the remainder of the fall semester.
Both Pueblo Districts 60 and 70 have done so, as have Colorado Springs School Districts 11, 20, and 49.
Pfizer announced Monday that its COVID-19 vaccine candidate has been 90% effective.
In a press release, the company said that in Phase 3 trials, the vaccine has proven to promote a vaccine efficacy rate above 90% following the two-shot regimen.
Pfizer is already in the process of producing millions of doses of its vaccine candidate after the U.S. government agreed to pay $1.95 billion for 100 million doses of the vaccine, should it prove effective. If and when the FDA grants approval for the vaccine, it will be distributed to hospitals around the country by the U.S. military in an effort the Trump administration has dubbed "Operation Warp Speed."
On Monday, Elizabeth Watts will take you to the Backyard Marked in Black Forest. It's a farmer's market that actually started during the pandemic. She'll show you how they plan to make things work through the winter months.
On Tuesday, Patrick Nelson will introduce you to a family that is doing their best to celebrate Thanksgiving together and what they're going through to make that happen. You'll also hear from experts on ways to keep your gatherings as safe as possible.
Then on Thursday, Patrick will show tell you about the current crisis for daycares. Ten percent have closed during the pandemic. He'll explain why and also how a non-partisan group is doing what they can to protect daycare centers during these tough times.
With The Rebound Colorado, News5's team will be here to answer your questions, bringing you expert advice to balance the books, pay the bills, and rebuild savings accounts. E-mail us any time at firstname.lastname@example.org with your suggestions, feedback, frustrations, ideas, suggestions, and anything else you need.