A White House Coronavirus Task Force report dated Sept. 27 recommends that certain Wyoming counties, including Campbell County, require face masks be worn indoors, in public and in commercial spaces.
The most recent task force report to the governor Sunday backed off of the mask “requirement" and instead urges mask “enforcement,” according to the Casper Star Tribune.
The 10 counties named in the Sept. 27 report are categorized as being in red, orange and yellow zones based on how severe their recent reported COVID-19 case numbers had risen from Sept. 19-25.
At the time, Campbell County fell within the yellow zone.
As a state, Wyoming is in the red zone for cases, meaning that it is averaging 101 or more new cases per 100,000 population in the week leading up to the report. It was ranked 13th highest in the country, according to this metric.
The Center for Public Integrity published the Sept. 27 report Thursday.
The White House Coronavirus Task Force reports are given to the governor weekly. While the task force reports are taken into consideration by the state, Gov. Mark Gordon’s senior policy adviser told the Star Tribune on Friday that the state takes the White House recommendations into consideration, but weighs other perspectives when making decisions.
Neither Gordon nor State Health Officer Dr. Alexia Harrist mentioned the White House mask recommendations during a Monday COVID-19 briefing. However, both did express concern about the surge of the virus around the state. Both also said they have no plans yet to implement more public health restrictions.
Since the Sept. 27 report, Wyoming has experienced a spike in its number of cases and hospitalizations related to the virus.
As of Friday afternoon, Campbell County has 405 confirmed COVID-19 cases and an additional 40 probable cases. There also are 101 active lab-confirmed cases in the county, according to the Wyoming Department of Health. Overall, 336 of the county's active and probable cases have recovered.
The 405 confirmed cases reported Friday represent a nearly 55% increase over the past 30 days. On Sept. 9, the county had 183 confirmed cases, which means local spread has averaged 7.4 new confirmed cases a day over that time.
There have been 7,335 combined confirmed and probable cases throughout Wyoming. Since the virus took hold, the state has seen 54 COVID-19 related deaths, including two from Campbell County.