SWEETWATER COUNTY — The Sweetwater County COVID-19 Emergency Operations Center released new information on COVID-19 cases in Wyoming and the county in its Thursday, April 2 daily situation report.
A total of 150 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Wyoming as of Thursday afternoon. Of the 150 positive cases, the state reports that 31 patients have recovered. About 13 percent of these cases required a hospital stay. In 22 percent of these cases, it is indeterminable for health officials whether the patient was hospitalized.
While Wyoming’s case count ranks among the smallest in the U.S., the state’s per capita total outpaces more than a dozen other states. Wyoming remains the only state without a known death of a coronavirus patient.
Cases of COVID-19 across 16 of Wyoming’s 23 counties, include: Albany – 3; Campbell – 6; Carbon – 3; Converse — 2; Fremont – 26; Goshen – 1; Johnson – 8; Laramie – 36; Natrona – 19; Park – 1; Sheridan – 10; Sublette — 1; Sweetwater – 3; Teton – 29; Uinta — 1; and, Washakie — 1.
The first confirmed positive Sweetwater County patient is now fully recovered and has returned to work, according to the EOC. The second confirmed positive patient remains in quarantine in good condition with mild symptoms treatable from home. The third confirmed positive patient, a young child, also remains in good condition with mild symptoms treatable from home.
Castle Rock Medical Center reported Thursday that they have collected a total of 30 COVID-19 tests with 1 returned positive, 21 returned negative and 8 pending results. People who think they have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms such as cough or difficulty breathing, should call Castle Rock Medical Center at (307) 872-4590 for medical advice. Please do not travel to Castle Rock Medical Center in person without first calling so they can prepare appropriately.
Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County reported today that they have collected 231 COVID-19 tests with 2 returned positive, 159 returned negative and 70 pending results.
Those who have a temperature of 100 or greater or a cough should call their health care provider or Sweetwater County Memorial’s Nurse Triage Line at 307-522-8523. Anyone with signs of a serious or life-threatening health issue should go to the emergency room.
QUESTIONS AND EOC ANSWERS
What contingency plans are in place in the event MHSC is overwhelmed with COVID patients?
Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County is actively working with both Aspen Medical Center and Castle Rock Medical Center not only to address potential overflow from COVID-19 patients but also for regular and ongoing patient care needs.
What other locations are being considered?
Western Wyoming Community College has offered one of their dormitory buildings as a possible alternative treatment or housing facility. The EOC continues to work together with our local healthcare providers to identify other existing facilities suitable for varying levels of triage and/or treatment. We are fortunate to have a number of different potential alternatives in our community to include, for example, the Events Complex, the Wyoming National Guard armory and a variety of privately owned and operated community health and/or medical clinics.
What is being done to prepare those locations for use now?
We are coordinating the development and execution of several different memoranda of understanding (MOU) between a number of different organizations and facilities to ensure everything is in place as potential needs present themselves.
Memorial Hospital of Sweetwater County already has an existing MOU with Aspen Medical Center to address potential patient overflow issues, which predates the COVID-19 crisis. We are also working to define various "trigger points” for the activation of these facilities and planning for the labor, equipment and supplies needed to seamlessly and expeditiously achieve these transitions.
What is being done to locate additional ventilators, if needed?
There is already a supply chain in place that allows Sweetwater County Emergency Management and Sweetwater County Public Health, in coordination with their counterpart agencies in state government, to receive critical equipment and supplies from the Strategic National Stockpile (SNS). To date, during this crisis and through these preexisting processes, Sweetwater County has already received a bulk shipment of PPE from the SNS and will soon receive a bulk shipment of hand sanitizer. These supplies are then distributed locally by Emergency Management and County Public Health.
What is being done to identify additional medical personnel, if needed?
One of our biggest priorities is to preserve our workforce by avoiding any exposures or infections to our medical and healthcare professionals and our emergency first responders including emergency medical services, law enforcement, fire, nurses, physicians, etc. Part and parcel to this priority, we have and continue to distribute and facilitate the distribution of critical PPE supplies to these groups to ensure they have the safety equipment they need to continue to safely do their jobs and serve the public during this crisis.
Some considerations we've made to bolster staff include drawing from other local providers as well as contacting reserve and/or recently retired personnel. However, as with additional supplies, the best way to address the need for additional personnel is to not need them by everyone doing their part to flatten the curve.