Coronavirus In Wyoming: Resources & News

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

Updated 7/3/20 at 10:15 a.m.

There are a total of 1,582 confirmed and probable cases across the state as of Friday, July 3. Thirty-two new lab-confirmed cases were reported across the state in Albany, Campbell, Carbon, Fremont, Goshen, Laramie, Lincoln, Natrona, Park, and Sweetwater counties.

Fremont County 323; Laramie 184; Uinta 145; Natrona 116; Teton 103; Sweetwater 91; Park 54; Campbell 45; Washakie 34; Albany 32; Lincoln 28; Sheridan 19; Big Horn 17; Johnson and Converse 16; Carbon 15; Hot Springs nine; Crook seven; Goshen five; Sublette and Platte three 3; Weston counties two; Niobrara one.

The Wyoming Department of Health reports that 1,154 lab-confirmed and probable cases have recoveredacross the state. Wyoming has had 20 confirmed deaths. More than 49,000 tests have been completed statewide.

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

Governor Mark Gordon's Press Briefings

Press Conference on COVID-19, July 1, 2020

State Orders -- Updated June 29, 2020

The Wyoming State Health Officer has issued the following public health orders:

Statewide Gatherings

On June 16, the Wyoming Department of Health announced it will now allow in-person visits at long-term care facilities, but under specific guidelines. Visits will only take place in a designated outdoor space, and will be limited to two visitors at a time. Also, visitors will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms, and they’ll have to wear a face covering, while staff and residents will need to wear a surgical face mask. Additionally, a facility staff member trained in patient safety and infection control measures must remain with the resident at all times during the visit. As facilities decide whether or not to allow visits, WDH is asking them to consider local conditions.

The Wyoming State Health Officer has issued the following public health orders:

On March 27, Gov. Mark Gordon made further changes to his orders regarding public gatherings. The governor's updated orders allow for outdoor gatherings of up to 250 people to occur after June 1, with social distancing and increased sanitization measures in place.

On May 15, many restrictions under the above public health orders were eased. Restaurants may offer outdoor and indoor dining under certain guidelines, including but not limited to: staff that come within six feet of customers or other staff must wear face coverings; tables must be at least six feet apart; and tables must be limited to groups of six people, preferably of the same household.

The new public health orders also ease certain restrictions to other public gathering areas, including gyms, salons, movie theatres, performance venues, as well as churches, faith-based organizations, and funeral homes. For more details to each of the restrictions, please see links to public health orders above.

State Parks campgrounds were opened on May 15 for Wyoming residents only.

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 caregivers, grocery store workers, truck drivers, and delivery workers 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

This is part of a new 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 9:30 p.m. ET

President Trump on Friday declared that the coronavirus pandemic is a national emergency, a designation that frees up as much as $50 billion in federal assistance to state and local governments overwhelmed by the spread of the virus, and makes it easier to surge medical resources to areas that need them most.

Remote rural towns are a good place to be early in a pandemic, as they tend to be more spread out, which potentially means fewer chances to catch a bug. Remote rural areas are also, by definition, way removed from major seaports, airports and often even big highways. So it generally takes longer for new viruses to show up in tiny towns, like Fredonia, Kan.

"I always say it's a hundred miles from anywhere," says Cassie Edson, with the Wilson County Health Department. "It's a hundred miles from Wichita, a hundred miles to Joplin, a hundred miles to Tulsa."

CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION

Top state officials on Thursday said the risk for the coronavirus in the state remains low.

The Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) said there is still only one reported case of COVID-19 in the state. A woman in Sheridan County was confirmed to have the coronavirus on Wednesday, March 11.

public domain

In an announcement made Thursday afternoon, Acting University of Wyoming President Neil Theobald said spring break would be extended to two weeks, with students returning on March 30. And while the university is holding off on moving classes completely online, the extended break is meant to give faculty time to prepare for distance learning in case it becomes necessary.

Ted Brummond, University of Wyoming Photo Service

Two major actions ​regarding sports ​activities across Wyoming came on Thursday because of concerns over COVID-19. 

Map of the COVID-19 outbreak as of 11 March 2020.
Pharexia

The Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) has reported an adult female from Sheridan County with recent domestic travel has tested positive for COVID-19.

The announcement Wednesday evening followed a lab test from the Wyoming Public Health Laboratory in Cheyenne. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will conduct further testing, but the test result will be considered a "presumptive positive."

Teams around the world -- including at least two labs in the Mountain West -- are racing to develop a vaccine against the new coronavirus. 

A group at Colorado State University is working on ways to inactivate the virus, which is one option for developing a vaccine. 

CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION

What concerns do you have about the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) affecting Wyoming?

By contributing your comment, you consent to the possibility of having it read on the air. 

WPM/NPR Community Discussion Rules

Bob Beck / Wyoming Public Radio

State officials say there are no known cases of coronavirus in Wyoming, but they have plans in place to try and minimize an outbreak.

Updated at 10:17 p.m. ET

Hours after the White House rejected the idea of appointing a coronavirus czar, President Trump on Wednesday put Vice President Pence in charge of the administration's response to the disease.

"We're doing really well, and Mike is going to be in charge," Trump said, noting that Pence's experience as governor of Indiana made him adept at working with state and local health authorities.

"This is not a czar," the president later added.

Washington State Department of Agriculture

It's not uncommon for livestock to get certain strains of coronavirus. But the strains that affect cattle and other farm animals are not the ones raising fears of a global pandemic.

Thousands of cases of the coronavirus have been reported worldwide, with most occurring in China. However, the outbreak is sure to have big economic impacts in the U.S.

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