State moves Pueblo to level yellow on the dial, effective Wednesday morning

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PUEBLO, Colo. — Effective Wednesday, April 7, 2021, at 6 a.m., the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) announced they will move the county to Level Yellow – Concern on the state’s dial framework in response to sharp increases in Pueblo County’s COVID-19 case rates.

Pueblo County had been in level blue since February 6.

CDPHE informed Pueblo County leaders the current incidence rates are aligned with Public Health Order 20-36 COVID-19 Dial Level Yellow and implemented restrictions to COVID-19 Dial Level Yellow. 

Currently, Pueblo County is at 177.9 cases per 100,000 people and the county needs to be below 100 to stay in blue. The percent of positivity is now at 4.3%, while the number of days of decreasing or stable hospitalization has dropped to three days.

“During the past month, our numbers were low and remained steady, but during the last two weeks our cases have started to increase and we are at a point where we are starting to get concerned about the numbers,” explained Randy Evetts, public health director, Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment.

“We are at a critical juncture where our collective actions will determine how quickly our schools, our businesses and our regular day-to-day activities can return to a more normal state.  We must reduce the spread of this virus to assure that hospital and emergency care is available for our family and friends when they need it,” said Evetts.  

The increase in cases comes as Pueblo County now has five different confirmed variants of the COVID-19 virus in the community. Public health is investigating almost 200 cases linked to a variant. The variants are the B.1.351 South Africa, P.2 Brazil, B.1.1.7  United Kingdom, B.1.526.2 New York and B.1.427/429 California. The variants spread from person to person easier, however, the vaccine protects from these COVID-19 variants.

Evetts added, “This is concerning for our entire community. I am hopeful that with the cooperation of our residents, leadership of our community and commitment by our businesses, we can reverse the trend of COVID-19 infections quickly and return to a more open economy and community.”  “I encourage our community members to get vaccinated to help prevent the spread of the virus,” said Evetts.

As the state’s mask mandate has been extended to May 6, officials are urging people to continue to maintain vigilance in taking precautions to help prevent the spread of the virus.

“We are asking our community to join us in this behavior effort by continuing to wear masks, maintaining social distance from other, avoiding large gatherings, and following other preventive measures in their daily lives,” explained Evetts. “It’s easy to let our guard down when we are at home or in the community. However, it all the small things that we do consistently in our daily lives that make a difference. These simple strategies and diligence will reduce the spread of the virus, help us to reopen and maintain or local businesses, and allow our students to return to school.”  

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