Suspected COVID-19 outbreak reported within Ouray city government

  • Courtesy Centers for Disease Control
    Courtesy Centers for Disease Control

Ouray County health officials this afternoon reported a suspected COVID-19 outbreak within Ouray city government.

Officials said there is one confirmed case and one probable case. Acting City Administrator Melissa Drake said the person with the confirmed positive case was tested during the mass testing event at the Ouray County Fairgrounds on Nov. 11.

Health officials say an outbreak occurs when two or more people in a facility, business or other non-household group test positive, or one person tests positive and another displays COVID-19 symptoms.

City officials have suspended operations within the department "where appropriate" and are disinfecting the facility where the employees work.

"We're working with the county to make sure we're doing everything we can," Drake said.

She confirmed that all other employees within the department are being tested, and that the two employees work closely together. But she declined to provide any other information, saying doing so could identify them.

Ouray City Hall closed to the public, except by appointment, on Monday after state health officials moved Ouray to "high risk" level orange on the state's COVID-19 safer-at-home dial. The move reduces business capacity in most cases from 50 to 25 people and nixed the variance allowing increased capacity at pools.

This is the third confirmed or suspected workplace outbreak in Ouray County reported this month. Outbreaks were confirmed earlier this month at Ouray Silver Mines and Brickhouse 737 restaurant. A fourth outbreak was reported in connection with a private gathering.