Larimer County recently announced a mandate regarding face masks. According to the county's public health authorities, wearing face masks will be required from people that will be in any indoor public areas. The order from Larimer County was released last Friday, and the implementation will take effect as soon as Wednesday hits the calendar.
Larimer County's New Health Metrics to Lift Mask Order
Larimer County Department of Health and Environment stated in their press release that the strict implementation of masks would be active throughout the county until the health metrics that the local government constructed are met. The categories must be filled up with the help of the county's health guidelines and the efforts of the citizens themselves in a span of 21 days after the said regulation.
Larimer County's hospital system currently has 91 patients admitted to their facilities. Among the metrics of the county's mask regulation is to lessen the admission to 65 percent and below. In addition to the metrics, the standard utilization of the hospitals' intensive care unit or ICU, which is now running at 105 percent, must hit 90 percent and below within 21 days.
The remaining goal to lift the indoor public mask regulation is to achieve less than 300 of Larimer County's seven-day COVID-19 case rate. Fortunately, the recorded cases in the region are at 274. The last metric that the county should hit is to maintain the seven-day positivity rate below 10 percent. The current positive cases confirmed throughout the county's health records are at 8.4 percent.
Hospital System vs. COVID-19
Larimer County Public Health Director Tom Gonzales, according to Reporter-Herald, said that the hospital system of Larimer is now at the peak of being overburdened. Because of this, the health authorities materialized a strict guideline that would help the surge of COVID-19 cases in the country to lessen. The Larimer's health director added that the hospitals must be eased from the coronavirus cases for them to cater to other medical cases in the community that require urgent and specialized treatments.
Vaccination, according to Gonzales, is the main defense of the county against the pandemic. However, the community's total population includes 35 percent that is still unvaccinated up to this date. To ease the cases, the director said that masks would be the second resort to decrease the cases and eventually ease the tension in Larimer hospitals.
Gonzales said in a Report-Herald interview that their team hopes for a better vaccination rate among the county's population compared to the recorded vaccine distribution today. Moreover, the health director emphasized that their team is looking forward to the help of federal policies in encouraging the unvaccinated population to take the treatment.
The current status of the county's vaccination is currently at 110 shots per day. If this continues, Gonzales said that 80 percent of Larimer's vaccination rate would be achieved gradually after five months. Gonzales explained that the time is too long for the county to recover, and hospitals would not survive that time span.
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