Continuing the Crook County News Since 1884

LTC temporarily closes to visitation

The long term care unit at Sundance Memorial Hospital has temporarily closed to all visitation. The lockdown is expected to come to an end within approximately a week.

Though there has been a small uptick in cases over the last few weeks, CEO Micki Lyons explains that the decision is not related to the overall pandemic situation. It is a mandatory closure due to a case occurring within the nursing home itself.

“We had one LTC employee test positive for covid which requires us to shut down to visitors for a minimum of two weeks,” she says.

The closure will come to an end as soon as the risk of exposure has passed, Lyons says.

“As long as no other staff or residents test positive in the next 14 days, we will be able to open back up,” she confirms.

Current Stats

Since the beginning of June, Crook County Public Health has reported 11 new confirmed cases within the county, four of which were announced over the last week. Two of the cases had already recovered by the time the announcement was made because the reporting came from out of state and was delayed.

This brings the county’s overall total to 415 confirmed cases and 37 probable cases.

On Tuesday, five more deaths related to COVID-19 were announced by the Wyoming Department of Health, including three in Laramie and two in Teton County. With an additional death announced the week before, this brings the ongoing total number of deaths to 735.

Active cases in Wyoming have decreased by 40 over the last week and now stand at 437. During that timeframe, 371 new lab confirmed and 90 new probable cases have been announced.


As a whole, Wyoming has now administered 190,558 first and 170,343 second doses of the two-dose vaccines and 13,539 of the one-dose vaccine. However, Crook remains the second least vaccinated county in the state.

As of June 7, just 17.67% of Crook County residents were fully vaccinated compared to the 29.47% state percentage. Only Campbell has a lower vaccination percentage at 16.66%, while the next lowest percentage on the map is Niobrara County with 21.34%.

Conversely, the most vaccinated county at this time is Teton at 54.47%, considerably higher than the second county on the list: Albany at 40.06%.

According to Crook County Public Health, by the beginning of this week, 1285 first doses and 1139 second doses had been administered in this county.

A new study released by the Centers for Disease Control last week found that the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines not only reduce the risk of infection by 91%, but also improve symptoms if a person does contract the disease.

“Fully vaccinated people who still get COVID-19 are likely to have milder, shorter illness and appear to be less likely to spread the virus to others,” said CDC Director Rochelle P. Walensky in a statement.

The Road Ahead

On Monday, Governor Mark Gordon unveiled his plan to leverage resources such as federal relief funds to help Wyoming thrive in the years ahead. The plan is split into three phases: a short-term “survive” stage, a mid-term “drive” stage towards a long-term goal of helping Wyoming “thrive.”

Survive: Immediate problems to be addressed with available funds include the increased need for mental health and substance abuse services; tax relief for businesses; improved broadband connectivity; expanding camping at Wyoming State Parks to address overcrowding; and increasing employment opportunities in the oil and gas industry.

Drive: Goals include strengthening the economy by activating new economic sectors and creating new jobs, creating a better alignment among workforce, economic and educational opportunities; expanding outdoor recreation and enhancing wildlife populations; focused efforts to retain and attract working families and young adults to the state; promoting and enhancing food supply, distribution and markets; and infrastructure projects.

Thrive: According to the governor’s report, “This is the phase for big ideas and future benefits”. Specific recommendations have not been made at this time.

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