Coronavirus In Wyoming: Resources & News

Wyoming Public Media is here to keep you current on the news surrounding the coronavirus pandemic. 

The Latest News On COVID-19 In Wyoming 

Updated 5:25 p.m. MDT 3/29/2020

There are now 87 confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Wyoming. Fremont County confirmed two new cases and Sublette County reported its first confirmed case on Saturday. Natrona County also reported an additional confirmed case on Sunday evening, bringing its total to nine.

Fremont County has 23 cases, while Laramie County has 19. Several counties are reporting multiple cases: Teton County 14; Sheridan County six; Johnson County five; and Carbon County three. Albany, Campbell, Converse, Goshen, Park, Sublette, Sweetwater and Washakie Counties each have one confirmed case.

As of Sunday, March 29, the Wyoming Department of Health says the Wyoming Public Health Lab has completed 1,204 tests.

Commercial labs reported completing 436 tests, and one test was completed by the CDC. The department reports that 20 people have recovered from the virus. There have been no deaths.

(Commercial labs are required to report positive test results to WDH; negative results are not reported consistently.)

State Orders

Governor Mark Gordon has supported a statewide order issued by the state health officer prohibiting gatherings of 10 people or more in a single room or confined space. The order does provide some exemptions.

The order supplements a statewide order issued March 19 that closed bars, restaurants, theaters, gymnasiums, some child care facilities and schools. Many restaurants remain open with carry out, delivery and drive thru service only.

The state of Wyoming issued an order to close all non-essential personal services. The closure applies to cosmetology services including nail salons and barber shops. It will also affect massage parlors, tattoo, body art and piercing shops. 

The prohibition does not apply to gatherings at private residences, hotels and motels for lodging purposes, government facilities and businesses, grocery stores and retail or business establishments that can provide adequate social distance spacing of 6 feet or more. Healthcare facilities are also exempt, as are long-term care and assisted living facilities that are complying with Wyoming Department of Health and Centers for Disease Control directives.

Wyoming Public Media would like to thank and recognize all health care workers, doctors, nurses and care givers during the global pandemic.

News & Updates:

Resources:

Do you have specific questions about the virus in Wyoming, you or your family’s health, what this means for your job, your home and your town's economy? Please submit them here and we'll do our best to report the information you need.

We also want to hear from you on how your community is responding. Tell us what you're seeing, hearing and experiencing in your neighborhood, grocery store and beyond.

On social media, use the hashtag #COVID19WY.

Ways to Connect

Wyoming Department of Education

Top state officials are requiring Wyoming schools stay closed through April 17. State Superintendent Jillian Balow and the Wyoming Department of Education have been working with districts across the state to help figure how schools will work for all students if closures persist.

Wyoming Public Radio's Catherine Wheeler spoke with Balow first about how statewide exams have been canceled for this year.

Samira Caamano

On Friday, Governor Mark Gordon and Superintendent of Public Instruction Jillian Balow extended a recommendation for all Wyoming schools to shut down until at least April 17 in hopes of slowing the spread of coronavirus. Some schools have been on Spring Break and the closures just felt like an extra-long vacation…at first.

But lots of parents were left wondering whether they were now responsible to homeschool.

https://www.apartmentfinder.com/

The COVID-19 pandemic is affecting both national and state economies, as many find themselves unable to work. Perhaps those left most out in the cold are low-income renters, who are eying the first of the month with more fear than usual.

This is part of a series looking at pressing coronavirus questions of the week. We'd like to hear what you're curious about. Email us at goatsandsoda@npr.org with the subject line: "Weekly Coronavirus Questions."

Updated at 7:40 p.m. ET

President Trump signed an historic $2 trillion coronavirus relief package on Friday just hours after the House approved it amidst the deepening crisis over the pandemic.

"This will deliver urgently needed relief to our nation's families, workers and businesses. And that's what this is all about," Trump said at a signing ceremony in the Oval Office.

https://www.westernaf.net/

The coronavirus pandemic has put an indefinite hold on live events, and musicians are among those losing out. So performers are turning to the internet as a virtual concert venue.

Your Questions About COVID-19, Answered 

Our reporters are working hard to answer your questions about COVID-19. These responses are curated by the Mountain West News Bureau and our public media partners at America Amplified

Main Street, looking south toward Canyonlands National Park, in Moab, Utah
Hurricanehink via CC BY-SA 3.0

Recreation-based counties are seeing higher rates of COVID-19 than other rural counties, according to an analysis from the Daily Yonder, a non-profit publication that focuses on rural issues.

Several news reporters in Wyoming lost their jobs or saw their hours cut this week, as the COVID-19 pandemic puts the squeeze on an already struggling industry.

As coronavirus infections rise across the United States, public health experts widely agree it's time for a drastic step: Every state in the nation should now issue the kind of stay-at-home orders first adopted by the hardest-hit places. And while most states will probably not need to keep the rules in place for months upon months, many health specialists say the lockdowns will need to be kept up for several weeks.

Yet among these same experts, there is debate when it comes to the natural next question: What strategy can be deployed after the lockdowns are lifted?

A spate of mysterious second-time infections is calling into question the accuracy of COVID-19 diagnostic tools even as China prepares to lift quarantine measures to allow residents to leave the epicenter of its outbreak next month. It's also raising concerns of a possible second wave of cases.

Updated at 5:50 p.m. ET

President Trump has signed a historic $2 trillion economic recovery package into law Friday afternoon, shortly after the House of Representatives approved the bill.

In an Oval Office ceremony Friday, the president thanked Republicans and Democrats "for coming together, setting aside their differences and putting America first" to pass the legislation. Trump was joined by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy. No Democrats were present at the signing.

Charlize Branch

Ethel Branch is the former attorney general of the Navajo Nation. A few weeks ago, when she went grocery shopping in Flagstaff, Arizona, she noticed that the shelves were already pretty bare. That worried her. For shoppers from the nearby Navajo Nation, a grocery store can be hours away.

On weekday evenings, sisters Lesley Laine and Lisa Ingle stage online happy hours from the Southern California home they share. It's something they've been enjoying with local and faraway friends during this period of social distancing and self-isolation. And on a recent evening, I shared a toast with them.

“The snow’s going sideways, it’s swirling,” said Billy Barr, from the abandoned silver mine he lives in at more than 12,000 feet in altitude in the Rocky Mountains.

We’re all social distancing these days, and it’s unclear when exactly that will end. But Barr has been doing this for almost 50 years. He’s the only full-time resident of Gothic, Colorado. 

“I'm the mayor and chief of police,” he said. “I hold elections every year but I don't tell anybody when they are, so it works out really well.”

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