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Wednesday, August 12, 2020
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Viewpoint: Corona Virus Still to Peak
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More and more of us are touched by Covid-19 as time goes by. Lori and I have a pair of friends that thought they might have the Corona Virus. The first is an elderly lady in her 70’s. She and her husband had flown to Florida and back just as the information about the virus began to make the news.

Having spent her work life as a nurse she determined she had some of the symptoms and quarantined herself. A phone call with a medical professional concluded that she probably had the virus. It ran its course and she appears to be doing well.

The second case is much the same. The male in his 60’s began exhibiting some of the symptoms and self-quarantined. A video chat with a medical professional came to the same conclusion. He probably has the Corona Virus. He is also healing well.

Did these two people become two of the reported cases of the Corona Virus even though they weren’t actually tested?

I took my question to Sarah Joseph, Public Information Officer for the Pueblo County Department of Public Health and Environment. I also had the opportunity to spend some time on the phone with Randy Evetts, Director of the Pueblo County Department of Public Health and Environment.

Joseph told me that, unless the two people had actually been tested and confirmed, they would not join the official number of cases in Colorado. That seems to be a two-edged sword. On the one hand, if they had the virus and aren’t counted, the numbers we see daily are woefully inadequate. Joseph feels that is the case and that the confirmed cases are just the tip of the ice berg.

The positive side of the coin is that if we have 60%-80% more cases than we are aware of it makes the odds of being hospitalized and actually dying from the virus much, much lower. It means you and I have a much better chance to make it through the disease.

Both Evetts and Joseph admit that there is much no one knows about the Corona Virus. The speed which it spreads is one of the big surprises. Joseph shared that she herself had flown to Australia at the end of 2019 and had information come out sooner about what was going on in China she may have not made that flight.

Evetts reminded us that hindsight was always 20/20 and that everything could be different if we had known the grand scale of what was descending on country after country.

“Think how much knowing it was coming would have effected the amount of equipment and PPE (Personal Protective Equipment) we could have had on hand,” he commented.

While Evetts praised the efforts to keep people home he also pointed out that historically most pandemics have a second peak about 6-8 weeks after the first peak. When asked if we had hit the first peak, he indicated that he didn’t think so.

The current number of cases in Pueblo County is 14 with two of those ending in death. Both agreed that the most effective way of minimizing the spread of the disease is that people stay home whenever possible.

One thing Evetts did share was that wearing masks could almost be harmful if not done properly. “The Corona Virus is a micro virus; it can pass through the masks. What the masks do help with is reminding people not to touch their face. I’ve seen people pull the mask down, scratch their face and then move it back up. I’ve seen masks not put on properly. In those cases, it isn’t helping.”

I digested the things they told me. “When can we say with certainty the pandemic is over,” I asked.

“There is a lot we don’t know about this virus,” they said almost in unison. “We don’t know that.”

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The Greenhorn Valley View is a weekly newspaper serving the communities of the Greenhorn Valley in Southern Colorado,
including Colorado City, Rye, San Isabel, Beulah and Hatchet Ranch.

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