Covid-19 Update: Thursday, March 25, 2021

Chaffee County Public Health is reporting 10 new Covid-19 cases in the last 7 days, 15 in the last 14 days, for a 2-week positivity rate of 1.06 percent.  

Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center has 2 Covid-19 patients and is at 40 percent capacity.  

The Colorado Department of Public Health released an updated Covid-19 framework yesterday, Dial 3.0.  

State officials expect that Dial 3.0 will remain in effect until mid-April, at which point the state plans to retire the dial and implement a new public health order that gives greater control over restrictions to local public health agencies.  

While Chaffee County Public Health anticipated the announcement of Dial 3.0 this week and may move Chaffee County to the Green Level in the near future, the county will remain in the revised Blue Level until further notice.  

The new Blue Level offers greater flexibility and fewer restrictions than before.  The Chaffee County Leadership Roundtable will review Dial 3.0 at their meeting Monday, March 29th to determine whether moving to the Green Level is the right move.  

Some highlights of Dial 3.0 include:  Bars can now open with a capacity limit of 25 percent.  Restaurants may operate at 100 percent capacity with 6 feet distancing.  Outdoor events no longer have capacity restrictions.  There is no longer a state limit on personal gathering sizes.  

The updated dial does not change Colorado’s current statewide mask mandate.  

Chaffee County Public Health Director Andrea Carlstrom said in a press release, “While the launch of Dial 3.0 is a welcome one by many sectors due the decreased restrictions, this is not the time for us to let our guard down.  We still have a long road ahead to get as many people vaccinated as possible to reach an optimal level of protection.  The South African variant outbreak in Chaffee County is cause for concern, as this variant is looking to be more contagious and potentially resistant to vaccine and treatment.”

Chaffee County Public Health has added a vaccination clinic at the Buena Vista High School for this Sunday by appointment only.  

Those in Phase 1B.4 are eligible.  

Phase 1B.4 includes individuals 50 and older, frontline workers in higher education, food service, manufacturing, U.S. Postal Service, public transport, public health, human services, faith leaders, those providing direct care to the homeless, journalists, local and state government, and people 16-49 with designated high-risk conditions.  

To schedule a vaccine, go to  

Chaffee County is gradually re-opening to the public.  

As Chaffee County’s vaccination rate steadily increases and Covid-19 infection rates continue to decrease, County Administration has determined it will begin to re-open many of its public offices for limited in-person services.  

Re-opening will be conducted in a phased manner for the protection of staff and community.  The county’s public meetings will continue to be facilitated virtually through Zoom. 

Each county department continues to consult with Chaffee County Public Health on their operations and office re-opening considerations.  Each department will implement specific plans based on its physical space and types of business it conducts.  The county asks the public to limit in-person services to more complex needs or transactions that may be better addressed on site with staff.  Those who are able to do so are encouraged to continue to utilize remote services, including over the phone or on-line or through drop boxes and mail.  

Visitors are also encouraged to contact the department of interest before visiting the offices if there are questions or concerns about on site services. 

Dan R
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