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Wyoming Health Officials Unsure Why Laramie County Has Higher COVID Cases Than Rest of State

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11937

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Some Wyoming health officials are unsure as to why some counties are enjoying lower rates of active coronavirus cases than others.

Laramie County has a significantly higher number of active coronavirus cases than any other county — at 267, more than half of the statewide total of 476 as of Tuesday.

That means about three-tenths of 1% of the county’s population — 0.26% to be exact — had active coronavirus infections as of Tuesday.

The number of active cases in the county is seven times higher than the number found in the county with the second-highest total, Sweetwater County with 38.

However, the Laramie County vaccination rate is about the same as the statewide average — about 32%.

Wyoming Department of Health spokeswoman Kim Deti told Cowboy State Daily on Wednesday that the other 22 counties across the state aren’t doing anything different from Laramie County to account for the lower case numbers.

“There really isn’t much difference between what most counties are doing,” she said.

Cheyenne-Laramie County Health Department executive director Kathy Emmons told Cowboy State Daily last month that one recent wedding in the county caused a COVID spread throughout the community. She explained that the Delta variant is much more contagious than other strains of the coronavirus, and the low vaccination rate in both the county and statewide aren’t helping prevent its spread.

Johnson County, which had no active coronavirus cases as of Tuesday, has seen a surge of tourists this summer due to lessening or expiring health orders, but cases have still stayed low over the last month.

“We’ve gone up and down to about five cases in the last three weeks,” Robin King, the county’s public health preparedness specialist, told Cowboy State Daily on Wednesday. “Some tourists are wearing masks, but locals really aren’t wearing them. I haven’t seen anything different we’re doing, on a public health side, for cases to be low.”

As of Tuesday, active coronavirus cases were found in about eight one-hundredths of 1% — 0.08% — of the state’s population. However, once Laramie County was taken out of the equation, the infection rate dropped to 0.04%. Only two other counties had an active case rate above one-tenth of one percent — Uinta at 0.11% and Carbon at 0.12%.

With the upcoming Cheyenne Frontier Days Rodeo, Emmons said there are concerns the new Delta variant will spread even further. She added the Health Department has been working with CFD officials to make the event as safe as possible.

“It’s a concern because there are a lot of people in a close area, but at least it’s outside for the most part,” she said. “The CEO and chairmen (of CFD) are encouraging the volunteers to get vaccinated, too. The problem is if people get sick, they can’t go to work, which then impacts businesses and our local economy.”

However, Emmons said she does not expect to see any health orders or mask mandates coming back into play anytime soon. She added the Health Department is not recommending that people who have been vaccinated wear masks, but is recommending masks be used in public spaces by those who have not been vaccinated.

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55 New Coronavirus Cases In Wyoming Wednesday ; 5 Recoveries, 566 Active

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11944

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By Tim Mandese, Cowboy State Daily.

The number of active coronavirus cases in Wyoming increased by 90 on Wednesday.

Wyoming Department of Health figures showed that the department received reports of five recoveries among those with confirmed or probable cases. 

At the same time, the state reported 55 new laboratory-confirmed and 40 new probable cases, leaving Wyoming with 566 active cases.

Laramie County’s active case count increased sharply on Wednesday, growing by 49 to total 316; Sweetwater had 42; Natrona 39; Albany 26; Carbon 24; Uinta 22;Campbell 15; Platte 13; Lincoln 11; Teton and Weston eight; Fremont and Sheridan seven; Converse and Goshen six; Big Horn four; Park three; Crook, Hot Springs and Sublette two, and Johnson, Niobrara and Washakie counties had one each.

Active cases are determined by adding the total confirmed and probable coronavirus cases diagnosed since the illness first surfaced in Wyoming on March 12, 2020, subtracting the number of recoveries during the same period among patients with both confirmed and probable cases and taking into account the number of deaths attributed to the illness.

The new confirmed and probable cases brought to 62,737 the number of people diagnosed with coronavirus since the first case was detected in Wyoming in March 2020.

Of those, 61,420 have recovered.

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COVID Cited In Four More Deaths in Wyoming

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11909

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By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

Coronavirus is being blamed in the deaths of four more Wyoming residents, the Wyoming Department of Health announced Tuesday.

The department said the older Wyoming residents from Big Horn, Goshen, Laramie and Park counties all occurred in June, bringing the number of deaths linked to COVID among Wyoming residents to 751.

Fatalities included an older Big Horn County man hospitalized in another state for treatment of the illness and an older Goshen County woman who was also hospitalized and was a resident at a long-term care facility.

Also among the victims was an older Laramie County woman who was hospitalized for treatment and was also a resident of a long-term care facility, and an older Park County woman who had been hospitalized.

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125 New Coronavirus Cases In Wyoming Tuesday; 257 Recoveries, 476 Active

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11907

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By Tim Mandese, Cowboy State Daily.

Wyoming’s active coronavirus increased 72 to start the week Tuesday.

Wyoming Department of Health figures showed that the department received reports of 257 recoveries among those with confirmed or probable cases between Friday and Tuesday. 

At the same time, the state reported 125 new laboratory-confirmed and 72 new probable cases, leaving Wyoming with 476 active cases.

Laramie County remains continued to have the highest number of active cases Tuesday at 267; Sweetwater had 38; Natrona 32; Uinta 23; Albany 21; Carbon 18; Campbell 14; Lincoln nine; Platte eight; Teton seven; Fremont and Weston six; Converse and Goshen five; Sheridan four; Big Horn and Park three; Crook and Hot Springs two, and Niobrara, Sublette and Washakie had one.

Johnson County had no active cases Tuesday.

Active cases are determined by adding the total confirmed and probable coronavirus cases diagnosed since the illness first surfaced in Wyoming on March 12, 2020, subtracting the number of recoveries during the same period among patients with both confirmed and probable cases and taking into account the number of deaths attributed to the illness.

The new confirmed and probable cases brought to 62,642 the number of people diagnosed with coronavirus since the first case was detected in Wyoming in March 2020.

Of those, 61,415 have recovered.

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74 New Coronavirus Cases In Wyoming Monday; 74 Recoveries, 540 Active

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By Tim Mandese, Cowboy State Daily.

Wyoming’s active coronavirus increased 18 to end the week.

Wyoming Department of Health figures showed that the department received reports of 74 recoveries among those with confirmed or probable cases on Friday. 

At the same time, the state reported 74 new laboratory-confirmed and 18 new probable cases, leaving Wyoming with 540 active cases.

Laramie County had the highest number of active cases at 266; Sweetwater had 56; Natrona 48; Albany 34; Uinta 22; Campbell 19; Carbon 14; Lincoln and Sheridan 10; Goshen and Teton eight; Converse, Fremont and Park seven; Platte and Weston six; Johnson four; Big Horn three; Hot Springs two, and Crook, Niobrara and Washakie one.

Sublette County had no active cases on Friday.

Active cases are determined by adding the total confirmed and probable coronavirus cases diagnosed since the illness first surfaced in Wyoming on March 12, 2020, subtracting the number of recoveries during the same period among patients with both confirmed and probable cases and taking into account the number of deaths attributed to the illness.

The new confirmed and probable cases brought to 62,445 the number of people diagnosed with coronavirus since the first case was detected in Wyoming in March 2020.

Of those, 61,158 have recovered.

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44 New Coronavirus Cases In Wyoming Thursday; 93 Recoveries, 522 Active

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11836

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By Tim Mandese, Cowboy State Daily.

Wyoming’s active coronavirus decreased 30 from Wednesday to Thursday.

Wyoming Department of Health figures showed that the department received reports of 93  recoveries among those with confirmed or probable cases. 

At the same time, the state reported 44 new laboratory-confirmed and 19 new probable cases, leaving Wyoming with 522 active cases.

Laramie County had the highest number of active cases at 251; Sweetwater had 57; Natrona 51; Albany 35; Campbell and Uinta 23; Lincoln 10; Park nine; Sheridan and Teton eight; Carbon, Fremont and Goshen seven; Converse six; Johnson five: Big Horn and Platte four; Weston three; Hot Springs two, and Crook and Niobrara one.

Sublette and Washakie counties had no active cases on Thursday.

Active cases are determined by adding the total confirmed and probable coronavirus cases diagnosed since the illness first surfaced in Wyoming on March 12, 2020, subtracting the number of recoveries during the same period among patients with both confirmed and probable cases and taking into account the number of deaths attributed to the illness.

The new confirmed and probable cases brought to 62,353 the number of people diagnosed with coronavirus since the first case was detected in Wyoming in March 2020.

Of those, 61,084 have recovered.

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62 New Coronavirus Cases In Wyoming Wednesday; 92 Recoveries, 552 Active

in News/Coronavirus
11811

By Tim Mandese, Cowboy State Daily.

Wyoming’s active coronavirus cases increased by 92 on Wednesday from Tuesday.

Wyoming Department of Health figures showed that the department received reports of 92 recoveries among those with confirmed or probable cases. 

At the same time, the state reported 62 new laboratory-confirmed and 33 new probable cases, leaving Wyoming with 552 active cases. 

Laramie County continued to have the highest number of active cases Wednesday, 272, an increase of 50 from Tuesday; Natrona had 57; Sweetwater 56; Albany 40; Uinta 23; Campbell 21; Park 12; Fremont nine; Sheridan and Teton eight; Goshen and Lincoln seven; Carbon, Converse and Platte six; Big Horn and Johnson four; Hot Springs and Weston two, and Crook and Niobrara had one.

Sublette and Washakie counties had no active cases on Wedneday.

Active cases are determined by adding the total confirmed and probable coronavirus cases diagnosed since the illness first surfaced in Wyoming on March 12, 2020, subtracting the number of recoveries during the same period among patients with both confirmed and probable cases and taking into account the number of deaths attributed to the illness.

The new confirmed and probable cases brought to 62,290 the number of people diagnosed with coronavirus since the first case was detected in Wyoming in March 2020.

Of those, 60,991 have recovered.

Report: Wyoming To Get More COVID Money Than Any Other State

in News/Coronavirus
11750

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By Ellen Fike, Cowboy State Daily

Wyoming will see the largest financial boost of all the states receiving federal coronavirus assistance, according to a new report from Pew Charitable Trusts.

According to the report issued Monday, Wyoming is set to receive $1.1 billion from the American Rescue Plan Act, which amounts to more than one-fifth — 22.7% — of its total spending in 2020. South Dakota will receive the second-largest boost, at 20.1%, the report said.

States that were having a hard time paying expenses prior to the pandemic will see the greatest relief from the program, the report said, but it added states that entered the pandemic in relatively good financial positions will also be helped.

“ARPA provides critical breathing room that was rare in the slimmed-down budgets that lingered after the Great Recession, which started at the end of 2007,” it said. “For states that entered the pandemic-driven downturn with robust reserves or otherwise escaped significant budget squeezes, the aid offers even more: an unexpected one-time investment opportunity.

The report also noted that Wyoming has seen multiple rounds of budget cuts within the last year, including the elimination of 324 state positions earlier this year.

Wyoming has received $534 million in American Rescue Plan Act funds to date, but another $534 million is anticipated to come sometime next year. The state also has until Dec. 31, 2024 to obligate the ARPA money and until Dec. 31, 2026 to spend it.

Gov. Mark Gordon decided earlier this month that there would be no special session this summer to determine how these federal funds would be spent. Instead, he has assembled a team to better identify what the state needs to do to survive and what can be done to better drive to a future where all of Wyoming can thrive. 

Gordon anticipated directing a fraction of the federal funds already provided to the state to address emergency funding needs this year. He also noted that the federal money will not be used this year to reduce the state’s spending on schools and local governments. 

For the use of the remainder of the federal funds, Gordon identified the following enduring funding criteria:

  •   Have a long-term impact or a return on investment 
  •   Not replenish budget cuts unless the replenishment can be sustained 
  •   Be sustainable and not add to the State’s ongoing financial responsibilities 
  •   Support stimulus over relief 
  •   Where possible, leverage the dollars through matching or buy-in programs  
  •   Create capacity for the future 
  •   Benefit a wide group of citizens 

According to the Pew report, Wisconsin is receiving the smallest boost compared to its spending, at 4.9%.

77 New Coronavirus Cases In Wyoming Tuesday; 83, Recoveries, 460 Active 

in News/Coronavirus
11766

By Tim Mandese, Cowboy State Daily.

Wyoming’s active coronavirus increased by five from on Tuesday from Monday.

Wyoming Department of Health figures showed that the department received reports of 83 recoveries among those with confirmed or probable cases. 

At the same time, the state reported 77 new laboratory-confirmed and 19 new probable cases, leaving Wyoming with 460 active cases.

Laramie County continued to have the highest number of active cases at 222; Natrona 53; Sweetwater 42; Albany 32; Uinta 22; Campbell 15; Park 13; Fremont nine; Teton eight; Converse, Goshen, Platte and Sheridan six; Carbon and Lincoln five; Big Horn two, and Crook, Hot Springs, Niobrara and Weston had one.

Sublette and Washakie counties had no active cases on Tuesday.

Active cases are determined by adding the total confirmed and probable coronavirus cases diagnosed since the illness first surfaced in Wyoming on March 12, 2020, subtracting the number of recoveries during the same period among patients with both confirmed and probable cases and taking into account the number of deaths attributed to the illness.

The new confirmed and probable cases brought to 62,195 the number of people diagnosed with coronavirus since the first case was detected in Wyoming in March 2020.

Of those, 60,988 have recovered.

Seven More COVID-Related Deaths In Wyoming

in News/Coronavirus
11763

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By Jim Angell, Cowboy State Daily

The number of Wyoming residents whose deaths have been linked to the coronavirus has grown to 747.

The Wyoming Department of Health announced Tuesday that the deaths of seven more Wyoming residents have been connected to the illness first detected in Wyoming in March 2020.

The deaths occurred between February and earlier this month, the department said.

Victims included a Natrona County man who died in February and a Natrona County woman who died earlier this month after being hospitalized for treatment of the illness.

Two older Park County women died earlier this month, one of whom was hospitalized for treatment.

Other victims included an older Crook County man and a Laramie County man who died earlier this month and a Platte County man who died in May. All three were hospitalized for treatment.

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