Governor Jared Polis screenshot from Press Conference 8/25/21

Observers were expecting Colorado Governor Jared Polis to announce a mask mandate at Wednesday’s press conference, but Polis says the state does not need to implement one just yet. KSUT’s Sarah Flower reports.

Story Transcript:

Sarah Flower  00:00
Despite increasing numbers of hospitalizations and COVID-19 cases continuing to rise across the state, Colorado Governor Jared Polis says that he’s not mandating masks on any level, just yet. Polis says Colorado’s hospitals are not seeing the capacity surges that other hospitals around the country are experiencing,

Governor Polis  00:21
We look at a daily basis in both pediatric as well as overall hospital capacity, neither one is in jeopardy right now. Every Coloradan, you get sick, you get the very best quality of care whether it’s appendicitis, whether it’s a heart attack, whether it’s COVID, or whether it’s pneumonia, and we continue to monitor that on a daily basis and know that our school districts across the state are taking this with the seriousness that it deserves to be able to prevent the overwhelming of our of our health capacity.

Sarah Flower  00:50
According to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment, 23% of ICU beds in Southwest Colorado are available as of Wednesday. More than half of all counties in the state are seeing an increase in their positivity rate, including La Plata, Montezuma, Dolores, San Juan and Ouray counties. Archuleta County saw a slight decrease in their positivity rate in the last seven days.