COVID-19 in Weld County: Low Vaccinations and High Hospitalizations
During a Tuesday (Sept. 21) press conference streamed by 9News, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) stated that COVID-19 hospitalization rates are plateauing across the state.
"Overall, it looks like we are seeing a gradual decline to a plateau at this point. We rarely stay at a plateau for very long," said Dr. Rachel Herlihy in the conference. "There is that possibility that we could be looking at a potential increase in cases once again."
One place that is not seeing a plateau in cases is Weld County. In fact, Denver7 reports that Weld County has some of the highest COVID-19 hospitalization rates in the state.
Dr. Herlihy noted that it all comes down to vaccination rates, stating that "the vast majority of hospitalizations, recently about 80 [to] 85%, are among unvaccinated individuals." According to Denver7, Weld County also has some of the lowest vaccination rates across Colorado.
Last week, the county's intensive care units (ICU) reached full capacity — something that health officials told CBS4 is not sustainable.
"Unfortunately, what we're seeing though, too, is people who aren't vaccinated are primarily driving the amount of hospitalizations now," Eric Aakko, a spokesman for the Weld County Department of Public Health and Environment, said to the station. "With anything these days, there is misinformation and we just want to...tell people it is safe, it is effective, and we've got plenty of vaccines available."
On top of encouraging vaccinations, health departments are also asking the public to start wearing masks indoors again — currently, only 4 of Colorado's 64 counties have reimplemented the mask mandate.
LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions
The 13 Best Foods to Boost Your Immune System to Fight Off COVID-19 Symptoms