Letter to the Editor: COVID-19 has put a strain on emergency organizations


To the editor,


We the undersigned medical professionals care about you and your health.  In recent days, the rapid rise in COVID-19 has put a strain on emergency departments, clinics and hospitals in the San Luis Valley, across the state of Colorado, and in our neighboring states as well.  There is a high level of this contagious disease spreading within our community, mostly within social settings. Public Health’s “Level Orange” allows businesses to remain open but with limited capacity.  Please use this time to shop online, pick up groceries or other items “curbside” and do your best to protect the vulnerable populations among us.  Together we can safely get through these winter months, but now is the time to help bring down the positive rate.


• When you are ill, please stay home unless you have an emergency.


• Use video chat or the telephone to visit with your primary care provider.  


• Be sure to get your flu shot.


• Cover your face when around others and keep your distance.


• Keep your contacts to a minimum and avoid non-essential outings. Please avoid gatherings that are not limited to people you live with every day.


• Wash your hands thoroughly and frequently.


Please follow instructions if you are told to isolate or quarantine.  


Carmelo Hernandez, MD, Chief Medical Officer, San Luis Valley Health
Emelin Martinez, FNP, MSN, Chief Medical Officer, Valley-Wide Health Systems, Inc.
Heidi Helgeson, MD, Chief Medical Officer, Rio Grande Hospital and Clinics

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