CDPHE: Safer At Home Provides Flexibility For Local Communities

This Monday, April 27, the state of Colorado will transition from being under the governor's stay-at-home order to the Safer At Home phase.

Gov. Polis has outlined the preliminary timetables and guidelines for when and how businesses can begin to reopen (see below).

Thursday, officials at the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment said Safer At Home gives counties the flexibility to respond to what is happening in their communities.

"What we've built into the Safer At Home process is some flexibility that local public health agencies and local officials will have to do something a little bit different than what's going on at the state level depending on local conditions," said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

Hunsaker Ryan said if counties are in the position to reopen ahead of the state timetable, those counties can submit a plan to the state for approval.

"If there are areas that have lower levels of transmission and they want to open up their economies a bit more and their hospitals agree and their local public health agency agrees and their county commissioners agree, they can submit a plan to us for consideration."

The state will be looking for specific items in those plans.

"Part of that plan is an early warning system," Hunsaker Ryan said. "What sort of metrics are they going to use, whether it's an increase in cases or case doubling time, if they're seeing their hospital beds starting to fill back up and what are their triggers for tightening up?"

If a county experiences a spike in cases, that county would also have the option to impose more stringent restrictions than outlined in the state's Safer At Home guidelines.

"If community transmission is still high and they're struggling to have enough capacity at their hospitals, they can certainly be more restrictive. They could have a stay-home order at the local level," Hunsaker Ryan said.

The entire CDPHE teleconference is below.

This week, Gov. Polis detailed some of the guidelines of Colorado's Safer At Home phase once the stay-at-home expires at the end of the day on Sunday, April 26.

On April 27:

--The stay-at-home will expire but people are encouraged to stay at home whenever they can.

--Critical/essential retailers will be able to reopen with strict precautions in place such as social distancing, staggered employee shifts, employees wearing masks and the like.

--Any retailer can open with curbside delivery. Those that desire to can open to the public on May 1.

--Personal services such as hair salons, dental appointments and elective surgeries can reopen as long as proper precautions are taken.

--Real estate showing can begin but still no open houses.

--Members of vulnerable population, such as the elderly or pregnant women, should avoid social interactions when they can.

Then on May 4:

--Non-critical businesses (Colorado's commercial capacity) can open at 50% of capacity.

--Large companies are advised to have symptom and temperature checks as people enter.

--Telecommunting should be maximized.

Here is Thursday's CDPHE teleconference. Participants included:

Jill Hunsaker Ryan, Executive Director of CDPHE

Sarah Tuneberg, Director of the Innovation Response Team

Scott Bookman, Incident Commander for CDPHE

4-23-20 CDPHE Teleconference


--Jim, AP - Contact tracing

--Chris, KBUT - How can the governor proceed if public health disagrees with his decision to reopen?

--Joe, KDVR - What can Eagle County do once open that other counties won't be able to do?

--Forest, Col Ind - Wise to open with PPE shortage?

--Vinny, Bloomberg - State getting medical supplies

--Sam, Den Post - IMHE model says Colorado should open in late May. Issues with that?

--Lily, KUNC - JBS testing

--Michael, KUNC - Why so many deaths in nursing home?

--Rae, Mtn West News - Plans to coordinate with neighboring states?

--Jesse, Col Sun - How tough to get PPE?

--Alan, CBS4 - Scale of testing

--Sam, Den Post - Is Colorado getting outbid or undercut in PPE purchasing?

--Jesse, Col Sun - How much has Colorado spent fighting the virus (they didn't have the number)

--Kyle, 9News - Is there a PPE shortage?

--Sady, Coloradoan - How get probability numbers for nursing homes?

--Lindsay, Col Public Radio - When did it become clear the March 12 order for nursing home visitors was not enough?

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