Family gatherings, workplaces see most new Covid cases

GRAND JUNCTION, CO – Jeff Kuhr, director of the Mesa County Public Health Department, reported during this morning’s administrative meeting of the Mesa County Commissioners, that the department has tested nearly 14,000 people to date. The latest two-week positivity rate, which is an indicator of how well the region is doing in keeping Covid rates down and which the Governor’s Office uses as a criterion for moving to the next phase of reopening, is at 1.8%. That’s well below the 5% rate the state needs to allow the county to proceed to the next phase.

Kuhr said that there were 12 positive cases on Sunday. At this time, about 25% of positive cases have been traced to close family contacts, while 22% have been traced to workplace transmissions.

“We know that there are people going to work knowingly with symptoms,” Kuhr said.

There are currently 8 patients hospitalized due to Covid-19 in Mesa County, nearly all of whom are at St. Mary’s Hospital. Kuhr said 3 or 4 of them are in the ICU.

Kuhr also said that the county is in discussions with the state about testing alternatives in the area to supplement existing testing operations and significantly expedite the delivery of test results.