A Pueblo County resident who participated in a coronavirus testing drive March 19 at the Colorado State Fairgrounds got a positive result.
That patient, as well as two new cases announced Saturday by the Pueblo Department of Public Health and Environment, now brings the Pueblo County total of positive COVID-19 cases to 10. The new cases are unrelated and involve two women, ages 19 and 71, and a 26-year-old man.
"Compared to a week ago, Pueblo has three times more positive COVID-19 test results. I expect the more people we test and the more test results we receive, Pueblo will continue to see more positive COVID-19 cases," Randy Evetts, the department’s public health director, said in Saturday’s announcement.
Also Saturday, President Donald Trump and the federal government approved a request from Gov. Jared Polis declaring Colorado a major disaster.
"Colorado is now eligible to receive additional federal resources to help address the global epidemic impacting our state, the nation, and the world," Polis said.
Of 90 tests administered at the fairgrounds on March 19, 37 are negative and 50 are pending. A person from Douglas County tested positive, bringing the total to two. One sample wasn’t able to be processed.
Of 254 tests administered overall in Pueblo County, 139 are negative; 101 are pending; and 13 are positive, including 10 from Pueblo County and three from surrounding counties. The health department said it gets results reported to them within seven or more days.
Otero County has two people who’ve tested positive for COVID-19, and Fremont County has one. No positive cases have been reported in Bent or Custer counties, according to the state health department.
As of Saturday, there have been 1,734 cases reported statewide, with 239 hospitalizations and 31 deaths, including one fatal case in Pueblo County: an 81-year-old woman.
"I continue to urge community members to follow social distancing of six feet or more from each other to stop the spread of this virus and protect our family, friends and neighbors," Evetts said Saturday.
There’s hope that message is resonating with the public: 96% of Coloradans are avoiding large gatherings, according to a three-day survey of 45,000 residents by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment this week.
Other findings include:
• 97% are washing their hands with soap and water more frequently.
• 70% are working from home.
• 35% are stockpiling food and other household items.
Half of the respondents reported a combination of symptoms indicative of generalized anxiety over the last two weeks.
Kind Connections, a statewide answering service to combat the uncertainty, anxiety and depression in Colorado brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic, says it has 100 volunteers statewide answering calls. To arrange one, residents can contact 719-281-3774 or visit www.sparkthechangecolorado.org/kindconnection.