A Letter to Our Community from AVH and Our Medical Staff
To Our Patients and Community Members:
As your local medical providers, we are reaching out to you to express our full support for what might feel like drastic measures to contain the spread of the COVID-19 virus in our community.
On March 23rd, Pitkin County released an amended public order that establishes a “stay at home” provision, along with other measures, to enhance social distancing and reduce viral transmission. Aspen Valley Hospital (AVH) and our physicians stand unified in full support of these additional requirements. We know that this virus is here in our local population, and that it is spreading. Orders on social distancing, limits on group size, widespread closures except for essential businesses and operations, closing our town to tourism — it can work. It is the best chance we have to keep the hospital from becoming overwhelmed so that we can continue to care for you, your family and your friends.
The COVID-19 pandemic has brought one of the greatest challenges in our lifetimes to medicine and to our community. We, your hospital and your medical providers, are working extremely hard to address this virus — by caring for those who are experiencing symptoms, helping prevent it in those who aren’t, and preparing to manage what may unfold in the coming weeks.
AVH and our medical providers also understand the importance of community testing, and we support the work of our Pitkin County Incident Management Team (IMT) to identify effective testing solutions that do not further strain our severely limited testing supplies and Personal Protective Equipment. Many of our hospital-based physicians are working with the hospital and county to identify new testing methods that will allow for more widely-distributed testing. The good news is that new testing methods are rapidly emerging that can return test results within hours instead of days. We are one of the first communities to be in line for these tests as they become available following FDA approval, thanks to our IMT.
We are standing on the front lines of this pandemic, and we are asking each of you to stand with us. Stay informed. Wash your hands. Isolate yourself if you feel ill. Avoid going out for non-essential reasons, and maintain six feet of separation when you must go out. It will save lives.
Yours in Good Health,
Aspen Valley Hospital and Our Medical Staff