Photo: Nick Sulzer // Buckrail

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Yesterday, during the Board of County Commissioners meeting confusion surrounding the change in COVID-19 metrics was addressed by Teton County Health Director Jodie Pond. A webinar presented by AARP Wyoming, Mountain-Pacific Quality Health, and the Wyoming Department of Health will be held on Sept. 10 to further explain the latest CDC guidelines.

The Teton County Health Department created its own metric system last summer based on a system created by Harvard. At that time, the Wyoming Department of Health and the CDC did not have a color-coded metric system in place, explained Pond.

“The system looked at a variety of things, including the capacity of your system and as you know at the time [2020], we had very little capacity in terms of our response for PPE, things like hospital capacity, and our contact tracing ability was very low at the time,” Pond said.

More recently, the CDC developed a system based on risk levels for communities due to the delta surge.

“We looked at our system and there were some things that were related to system capacity that wasn’t changing out of green but it wasn’t really telling the story of how much covid is out there, artificially it was keeping us in a low or moderate level and not telling the story about how much covid we had,” Pond said.

“There are two things that the CDC system considers, total new cases per 100,000 in past seven days and the percent of positive tests,” Pond said.

With ever-changing situations due to local COVID-19 infection numbers, it can be confusing to keep up with federal guidance on traveling and socializing in groups. At 1 p.m. Mountain Time (9 a.m. Hawaii) on Sept. 10, a free webinar will attempt to bring some of that information into focus.

Patty Hall will present the latest CDC guidance on travel and more during the webinar. Hall is the Long Term Care Ombudsman for the state of Wyoming. The Long Term Care Ombudsman is a person who investigates and attempts to resolve complaints and problems.

“I feel that with COVID and the increase in the Delta Variant cases, that it is important to talk about whether it is safe to socialize and travel and what that looks like,” says Hall. “This webinar is for anyone that has questions, concerns, upcoming travel, social plans and those just wanting to learn more.”

To take part in this free webinar, simply click on this link or dial 253-215-8782. The webinar will describe the best ways to prevent the transmission of infection in your home. For those who want to watch the presentations, but don’t plan to answer questions, watch the webinar on AARP Wyoming’s Facebook page anytime after the webinar’s start time.

Lindsay Vallen is a Community News Reporter covering a little bit of everything; with an interest in politics, wildlife, and amplifying community voices. Originally from the east coast, Lindsay has called Wilson, Wyoming home since 2017. In her free time, she enjoys snowboarding, hiking, cooking, and completing the Jackson Hole Daily crosswords.