With State of Colorado Extending Mask Requirements, SJBPH to Issue Local Public Health Order to Keep Region Aligned with CDC Guidance

Governor Polis announced today, April 2nd, that mask requirements will be extended for the state of Colorado through executive order. Masks are a proven and effective measure for limiting the spread of COVID-19 and San Juan Basin Public Health (SJBPH) is pleased to see the mask requirement kept in place during this critical time in the pandemic.

To keep the region aligned with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance, SJBPH will issue a public health order continuing to require masks in all public indoor settings unless all individuals present are fully vaccinated. A person is considered fully vaccinated if two weeks have passed after receiving the one-dose vaccine or their second dose of a two-dose vaccine series. The order, which applies to Archuleta and La Plata counties, takes effect April 3, 2021 and will remain in effect until May 3, 2021, or until either county achieves and maintains a seven-day incidence rate less than 35 cases per 100,000 people.

“A properly worn mask is extremely effective at limiting the spread of COVID-19 and science supports this,” said Liane Jollon, SJBPH Executive Director. “With the virus still circulating at high rates, variants present in our community, and only a portion of our population vaccinated, it’s so important we continue following public health precautions. By wearing masks, especially in public indoor settings, we will save lives and help ensure our schools can continue in-person learning. This order will save lives, keep our community in line with the best available science, and keep us on track to turn the page on the pandemic and recover as quickly as possible.”

The CDC guidance states that people “should wear masks in public settings and when around people who don’t live in their household.” The CDC also says that fully vaccinated people should “wear masks, maintain physical distance, and practice other prevention measures when visiting with unvaccinated people from multiple households.” The intent of the SJBPH public health order is to protect public health and safety and stay aligned with the CDC’s science-based guidance.

As of today, April 2nd, all Coloradans age 16 and up are eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. 16 and 17-year-olds are only eligible for the Pfizer vaccine at this time. Vaccines drastically reduce the likelihood of contracting and spreading COVID-19 and are highly effective at preventing severe illness or death from the virus. In addition to getting one of the three safe and effective vaccines, SJBPH continues to urge everyone to follow these important public health precautions:

  • Wearing face masks
  • Social distancing of at least 6 feet
  • Avoiding nonessential indoor spaces, and gatherings with others not in your household
  • Getting tested if you are symptomatic, think you’ve been exposed, or if you work in a high-contact job
  • Avoiding travel if possible
  • Washing hands well
  • Getting the COVID-19 vaccine

For information on local vaccine providers visit: https://sjbpublichealth.org/covid-19-vaccine/