Headlines April 1, 2020
Headlines April 1, 2020 KGNU News
Colorado’s hospitals are not currently anywhere near capacity, according to the Hospital Association, nevertheless, officials are finalizing guidelines to help doctors on the front lines of the coronavirus make very difficult decisions about how to prioritize care
Should the system become overwhelmed doctors would have to make choices over which patients get scarce equipment and staffing.
The Governor’s Emergency Epidemic Response Team has been working on how to put emergency protocols into place. The guidelines note that resources would have to be diverted from those with a lower likelihood of benefit to those with a greater likelihood.
Disability advocacy groups have objected to plans in other states – such as Alabama – that say people with severe mental retardation, advanced dementia, or severe brain injures may be poor candidates for ventilator support. Dr. Darlene Tad-y of the University of Colorado Hospital in Aurora, and a member of the response team, said that Colorado’s approach is not to look at categories of people but at an individual’s overall health and their likelihood to survive the virus.
The team is expected to have its report to the governor within 10 days.
Yesterday Colorado officials said that 17 people in the state had died due to the virus from Monday until Tuesday. That is the biggest single-day increase yet. The Colorado Sun reports that the total number of deaths is 70 – one more than the official total – because a man in Elbert County was reported to have died earlier with links to the virus. The total number of those infected increased to more than 2,900 – With 550 confirmed in the hospital.
In Boulder County, a second resident has died after testing positive. The county has 115 confirmed cases.
The state’s incident commander for the COVID-19 response said yesterday that the continued lack of critical testing supplies has stymied hopes that the number of tests would increase substantially.
Scott Bookman with the Department of Health said the limitation on testing people is based on the ability of those doing the testing to get personal protective equipment. And to conduct the necessary swabbing.
Yesterday, the state reported that there were an additional 1,485 tests but that number is less than what was reported on each of March 26th , 27th and 28th. 9News reports that tracking the spread of the virus is quite difficult – if only the very sick are getting tests.
Last night the Denver City Council passed three bills to help the residents get through the pandemic. A release from the city says that 13 and a half million dollars will be allocated – with 10 million going to fund for services and supplies like PPE, overtime pay for personnel, and the purchase of beds and medical equipment.
Three and a half million dollars will go to help businesses support their employees. A third bill will allow the city to donate surplus computers to a group called PCs for People to be used by low-income families.
The mayor of Longmont is facing criticism after he slammed the Governor’s stay-at-home policy, during a virtual city council meeting.
During the meeting, Mayor Brian Bagley, said that he wants somebody to come over and spit in his mouth so he can go to the hospital now because he is not going to die.
Denver 7 reports that Mayor Bagley seemed to focus on the economic impact of the stay-at-home order and questioned the decisions of state and local leaders.
Bagley said, “screw the fact that I mayor and screw the fact that I’m on the city council, my background is in economics… I am telling you we are not going to have a recession, we are not going to have a depression, we are facing the worst economic disaster in the history of the world – and if no is left after with jobs we are going to face health consequences much more than a disease that’s going to kill .o5 of one percent of us.”
The mayor said that he is not choosing the economy over the virus but that people die all the time, and that a political leader- presumably the governor – has suspended the constitutional right to assemble.
Polly Christensen a council member shook her head during the virtual meeting and later said that everybody is frustrated but we are grownups and need to listen to medical experts.
Yesterday, Governor Jared Polis sent a letter urging the federal government to automatically extend work authorizations for all Deferred Action Childhood Arrival recipients set to expire this year.
The policy started in the Obama administration, allows eligible immigrants ho came to the US illegally as children to receive a renewable two-year authorization to work and study.
In his letter to the Department of Homeland Security, Polis said that the extension of DACA would provide some needed stability to the state’s businesses and residents who benefit from the program.
About 900 workers at the JBS meat processing plant in Greeley did not go to work Monday as a handful of cases of COVID-19 were confirmed among employees. Union officials leaned about the mass call-offs yesterday and told the Denver Post they don’t think it is a concerted protest, but that people are afraid or maybe sick. The union represents about 3,000 at the meatpacking plant. Employees there speak 27 different languages.
Headlines April 1, 2020 KGNU News