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The case count for COVID-19 in Chaffee County has grown by seven cases since Sept. 13, or nine for the past week, according to Chaffee County Public Health (CCPH) Director Andrea Carlstrom. Four were reported Monday, three on Sunday and  one each on Sept. 8 and 10.

The latest cases, all from the north end of the country, include an 86-year-old man; a male of unknown age; a 37-year-old man; a 35-year-old woman; a 62-year-old woman and 23-year-old woman, all of whom were symptomatic. Three cases were asymptomatic, including a 32-year-old man, a 23-year-old woman, and a male of unknown age. All were described in the dashboard report as ‘resting at home.’

Health Dept. employees at the Touber Building test site. Courtesy photo.

There was no immediate information on possible reasons for the sudden increase in local community cases. The new cases brought the county positivity rate as of Sunday to 1.53 percent; without the four COVID-19 cases reported on Monday figured in.

The new virus cases bring the total since the pandemic started to 328, not counting 18 other cases detected here but that might have involved out-of-county residents.

Chaffee County Public Health is hosting weekly free COVID-19 Community Testing Clinics in Salida and Buena Vista.

  • The Tuesday and Thursday clinics are held in Salida at the Touber Building at 448 E. First St. from 9:30-11 a.m.
  • The Wednesday clinic is held from 9-11 a.m. in Buena Vista at 114 Linderman Ave. (subject to cancellation if the headcount is too low)

Testing is by appointment only. Appointments must be scheduled by close of business the day before the testing clinic will be held.

Criteria for testing includes:

  • Any community member (or others who consider Chaffee County their medical home) who is showing symptoms.
  • Any asymptomatic patient who has a known contact (within 6 feet, greater than 15 minutes) with a positive case or has traveled in an area with high rates of transmission. This does not include secondary contacts.
  • All healthcare workers, first responders, senior care facility workers, and essential workers who directly interact with the public while working, whether or not those individuals have symptoms.

If you are interested in testing, call CCPH at 719-539-4510 to be screened and scheduled for testing.

The current wait time for test results is  two to three days.

Officials said those with severe respiratory symptoms should contact their primary care provider directly.