Michael Von Flatern q4

It’s rare to be able to fully plan for a health crisis of this magnitude, let alone a health crisis along with an energy downturn. I feel for individuals and business impacted and hope the funds I and other legislators approved lessened the blow.

We have been watching the world, our country and our state struggle to get our arms around this historic pandemic event. No one was prepared for this, and the response has sometimes shown our uncomfortableness with the unknown.

With our numbers, I do not support a mask mandate at this time.

As with all things, there needs to be balance. In Wyoming, with our natural “social distancing,” low population and limited numbers, we are better able to seek balance between keeping people healthy and keeping our economy healthy.

Even with our governor choosing to avoid a complete shutdown, our initial response may have felt aggressive to many. It may also be why we have been able to avoid higher numbers, overcrowded ICU’s and a larger loss of our citizens, even in our own community.

It never feels good to assume even statistical risk for others.

We’re still learning as a world about how this virus behaves, so the science has changed, the testing has changed and recommendations always seem to be in flux.

It’s frustrating for us all. The role of the Department of Health is to be the state’s doctor, for all of our citizens of varying age and health. We have to listen to the opinions of our experts at the DOH, just as we listen to any advisor.

As individuals, we listen to our doctor’s advice, sometimes following it, sometimes getting another opinion, sometimes waiting it out. I think this is what Wyoming has been doing well.

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