Gov. Gordon: No 'enforcement' in Wyo National Guard's limited contact tracing role - Cheyenne, WY Cap City News
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Gov. Gordon: No ‘enforcement’ in Wyo National Guard’s limited contact tracing role

“Edwardo Herrera receives the Meritorious Service Medal. The Wyoming Military Department recognized employees at the Joint Force Readiness Center, both civilian and military, in Cheyenne, Wyo., Aug. 20, 2020. Awards varied from years of service, military achievements, and recognitions for civilians outside of the military department.” (U.S. Army National Guard photo by Cpl. Kristina Kranz)

CASPER, Wyo —  Governor Mark Gordon clarified in a media release Friday that the role of the Wyoming National Guard in assisting with contact tracing is very limited.

“Due to the record number of new positive cases of COVID-19 the Department of Health and counties needed urgent assistance, but the Guard members’ role is limited to contacting individuals who may have been exposed to COVID-19 based on their contact with someone who has tested positive (contact tracing),” the release said.

The Governor emphasized that the agreement between the Wyoming National Guard and the Wyoming Department of Health (WDH) is only for contact tracing services. 

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“The agreement does not include any enforcement activities whatsoever,” the release said.

The governor said the Wyoming Guard’s assistance is “a temporary solution until additional contact tracing resources are in place.”

“In these challenging times, it’s critical that the citizens of Wyoming receive accurate information,” Governor Gordon said. 

“Contact tracing is a significant undertaking given the level of spread of COVID-19 right now. The Guard was selected to assist because they have qualified, well-trained individuals who could provide immediate assistance. The Department of Health is evaluating other long-term solutions that do not involve the Guard, but would allow them to keep up with demand.” 

Other states, including Utah, Oklahoma, and Arizona also deployed the National Guard to assist with contact tracing when their COVID-19 cases were surging, the release said. 

“WDH Director Mike Ceballos said the Guard’s performance has been exemplary,” he added.

More information about COVID-19 in Wyoming, including on contact tracing, is available on the WDH website.

The Latest Statistics from the Wyoming Department of Health:

What to do if you are feeling sick: In the wake of the COVID-19 outbreak, the Casper-Natrona County Health Department says that people who are feeling sick or exhibiting symptoms should contact their primary physician.

If you do not have a primary care provider, and live in Natrona County, please contact the COVID-19 hotline, operated by the Casper-Natrona County Department of Health. The line is open Monday – Friday 8:00 am – 5:00 pm 577-9892. Hotline services are intended for Natrona County residents and may not be able to provide specific information to persons calling from out of county.

Officials ask that you please do not self-report to the Emergency Room. Persons experiencing problems breathing should call 9-11.

For general inquiries and non-symptom related questions about COVID-19, please contact the Casper-Natrona County Health Department via email:

  • Practice Social Distancing by putting distance between yourself and other people. This is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Stay home if you’re sick
  • Cover coughs and sneezes. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
  • Clean AND disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

A list of area closures attributed to COVID-19 are available here.