Dr. Deborah Birx visits Riverton for roundtable with government, health, and tribal officials regarding COVID-19

Published: Oct. 29, 2020 at 12:17 AM CDT
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RIVERTON, Wyo. (Wyoming News Now) -

A COVID-19 topic centered round table was hosted in Riverton today By the Wind River Casino.

The White House Coronavirus Response Coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx, was visiting Wyoming, and was present at the discussion and press briefing. Dr. Birx, Governor Gordon, tribal health officials, as well as state health officials all gathered at this roundtable to discuss the ongoing pandemic.

“It’s been an incredibly important discussion to really understand the Governor and the tribe working together as well as the community of people of Wyoming. Right now the northern plains states, I think you know, rank number one, two, three, and six in the country per cases per 100,000,” stated Dr. Birx.

According to Dr. Birx, public health officials are studying antibody levels of all states, and notes that states in our region have stayed under five percent.  Dr. Birx projects that even in the current wave of the pandemic, that we most likely won’t rise above 10 to 20 percent of people infected. She notes that  areas with higher antibody levels, like New York, also had higher morbidity rates.

Dr. Birx mentioned a few of the ways Wyoming has been identifying positive COVID cases throughout communities. She added, “Finding asymptotic individuals both in the tribal nations but also doing wastewater testing. This combination of testing that has been done here is equivalent to anything that we have seen at the best universities.”

Birx noted the best ways to stop the spread. She stated, “Wear your mask, physically distance, but really pay attention to what you’re doing in the household, in both public and private spaces, to not gather in that way that we know is spreading the virus.”

Governor Gordon said he doesn’t see limits in personal responsibility, and noted that local officials can make decisions pertinent to their own county. The governor noted, “Each county will probably, and the tribes have themselves, responded as is appropriate on a local level. Clearly what’s happening in Albany County isn’t exactly happening in Niobrara.” Governor Gordon noted that it’s important for local communities to make their own individual decisions to encourage their citizens to stay healthy.

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