Novel Coronavirus SARS-CoV-2

Transmission electron micrograph of SARS-CoV-2 virus particles, isolated from a patient. Image captured and color-enhanced at the NIAID Integrated Research Facility (IRF) in Fort Detrick, Maryland.

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For the first time in 2021, Teton County is in the yellow, low-risk zone.

Following weeks of decreasing COVID-19 cases the Teton County Health Department announced the drop from orange to yellow Thursday afternoon. In the two weeks from Feb. 11 to 24, testing found 88 local cases of COVID-19, a 53% decrease from the previous fortnight, which had 189 cases.

“With this lower caseload, Teton County Health Department’s contact tracing team continues to be able to connect with each new case and their contacts in a timely manner,” a press release said.

The department gauges the risk level on a variety of factors. Case counts are one; others include contact tracing capabilities, hospitalizations and test positivity rate, among others. Though case counts and community spread are still labeled concerning, each of the other factors is either in the improved or stable category.

Wyoming’s pandemic numbers as a whole continue to decline as well. The state’s seven-day average of daily new cases was 13 per 100,000 people, according to The New York Times, which is even better than Teton County’s 23 per 100,000 people.

In light of the improvement, Gov. Mark Gordon will rescind his health order on personal care services. As of Monday, salons and tattoo parlors will be able to return to prepandemic operations, though they still have to comply with the statewide mask order.

Gordon is also easing restrictions on gathering sizes again. Starting Monday, outdoor events will be capped at 2,000 people, and indoor events will be able to have the smaller number of 1,000 people or 25% of capacity.

The changes will remain in place until March 15.

An earlier version of this story included gyms in the list of businesses that had most restrictions on them removed. Gyms are still covered by a state order that is in effect, and they have a variety of restrictions. Businesses still must comply with the statewide mask order. — Ed. 

Contact Tom Hallberg at 732-7079 or thallberg@jhnewsandguide.com.

Tom Hallberg covers a little bit of everything, from skiing to long-form feature stories. A Teton Valley, Idaho, transplant by way of Portland and Bend, Oregon, he spends his time outside work writing fiction, splitboarding and climbing.

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