SOUTHEAST IDAHO (KIFI/KIDK) - In Southeast Idaho Public Health’s Board of Health meeting on Thursday, the board, which consists of county commissioners and representatives from each county, made the decision to increase COVID-19 risk levels to moderate in Bannock, Bingham and Franklin Counties.
Butte County was downgraded from the high risk to the moderate risk category.
Power County continues in the high-risk category, and Caribou and Bear Lake Counties remained in the moderate risk category. Oneida County remained at the minimal risk level.
Changes in the risk levels was based on the active case rates, hospital capacity, percent positivity for testing, and the impact COVID is having on their communities.
“I support our Board’s decision to act, based upon data, to enact recommendations for measures intended to protect the health of their communities,” Southeastern Idaho Public Health District Director Maggie Mann said.
Per the Plan, risk levels will be assessed again in two weeks.
Counties (Bannock, Bear Lake, Bingham, Butte, Caribou, and Franklin) under the Moderate-risk category, should follow the following guidelines, which are recommended but not mandated:
- Strongly recommend and advise the use of face coverings when in public
- Limit events and social gatherings to no more than 150 people
- Vulnerable populations (elderly, individuals with underlying health conditions) take extra precautions
- Telework where possible and feasible with business operations
- Minimize non-essential travel
- Congregate living facilities (long term care, nursing homes, correctional facilities, etc.) to implement strict health policies for staff and visitors to avoid potential outbreaks
- Schools should implement plans in response to these guidelines and those of the Idaho Back to School Framework 2020
Power County, which is under the High-risk category, should follow the following guidelines, which are recommended but not mandated:
- Strongly recommend and advise face coverings when in public
- Limit gatherings to no more than 50 people
- Encourage vulnerable populations (elderly, individuals with underlying health conditions) to self-isolate
- Strongly encourage telework for those that are able
- Limiting travel/visitors to the region as well as travel within the State to areas with high rates of spread
- Congregate living facilities close to visitors and extra precautions implemented for employees
- Hospitals suspend scheduled, non-essential surgeries
- Businesses implement delivery/curb-side services as much as possible
- Places of worship implement virtual services where possible
- Discontinue youth and adult sports/activities in which physical distancing is not possible
- Consider industry-specific measures/restrictions
- Schools should implement plans in response to these guidelines and those of Idaho Back to School Framework 2020
“No matter the risk category, we urge all residents to take precautions to slow the spread of COVID-19. This includes practicing physical distancing of at least 6 feet, wearing a mask when interacting with others outside your household, washing hands frequently, sanitizing commonly touched surfaces regularly, and isolating immediately if you begin showing symptoms of any virus,” Mann said.