Stage-4 of Rebound Idaho is a Go, Barely
BOISE, Idaho (KLIX)-Idaho will transition to the fourth and final stage of reopening the economy after being shutdown because of coronavirus (COVID-19), but only by a small margin based on virus cases.
"We almost didn't make it to stage-four this week." said Gov. Brad Little during a press conference at the Capitol Building Thursday morning as he announced the Gem State will move into the fourth-stage that allows all businesses to open up. That means nightclubs, larger sporting events, and senior care facilities will be able to open with specific health guidelines and social distancing protocols. However, the criteria to open came under a spike in virus cases which came close to preventing the state from transitioning to the final stage of Rebound Idaho.
Dr. Christine Hahn, Idaho state epidemiologist, explained there had been a surge in early June of COVID-19 cases, but she said that may be due to increased testing across the state. Testing went from several thousand a week to 10,000 plus a week. Despite that, health officials and Gov. Little encouraged people to continue to wear face coverings, keep six-feet apart, and practice good hygiene. That isn't the only factor the state is using to advance to the next stage, officials are looking at the number of people on ventilators, Dr. Hahn said there are very few people being treated for COVID-19 in state hospitals.
People will be able to visit with people in long-term care facilities as long as proper precautions are met to insure the safety of some of the most vulnerable to the virus.