Garfield County records 5 new recent COVID-19 deaths, despite fairly stable pandemic trends |

Garfield County records 5 new recent COVID-19 deaths, despite fairly stable pandemic trends

Garfield County counted five new deaths attributed to COVID-19 over the past six weeks, even as the county’s vaccination rate continues to go up.

Two of the recent deaths involved what are called “breakthrough” cases, meaning the individuals were fully vaccinated but still became ill, Garfield County Public Health spokeswoman Carrie Godes said Wednesday.

To date, since the pandemic was declared, Garfield County has had a total of 43 people die due to COVID-19, as determined by the County Coroner’s Office, with one of the recent deaths still pending official confirmation, Godes said.

The recent deaths involved two women and three men, ranging in age from late 50s to early 80s, including three people who had not been vaccinated or had not yet been fully vaccinated, she said.

One recent death involved an individual who had been residing in a long-term care facility, Godes said.

And one of the deaths involved one of the more-contagious variant strains of COVID-19 that have been detected. Garfield Health does not receive variant information on all confirmed COVID-19 cases, Godes said.

The newer deaths have occurred with people in either the Glenwood Springs or Silt areas of the county, she said.

The good news is that nearly all of the most-recently confirmed new cases of COVID-19 in the county have not involved people who are vaccinated, Godes added.

“As of today (Wednesday), 99.8% of fully vaccinated individuals in Garfield County have not had a positive COVID-19 diagnosis,” Godes said.

The recent spike in new deaths comes as the overall COVID-19 numbers for Garfield County remain fairly stable, but still in the cautious range, and as the county’s vaccination rate increases.

As of the latest tally, 51% of the county’s eligible population to receive the vaccine are fully vaccinated, Public Health reports. Nearly 60% have received at least one dose of the two-dose Pfizer or Moderna vaccine.

Some trends continue to be concerning for public health officials locally, though.

As of Thursday, 20%, or seven of the 35 most-recent new cases of COVID-19, were serious enough to require hospitalization.

The county’s test positivity rate has also increased over the past seven days to 4.6%, as of Thursday.

Senior Reporter/Managing Editor John Stroud can be reached at 970-384-9160 or

Support Local Journalism

Support Local Journalism

Readers around Glenwood Springs and Garfield County make the Post Independent’s work possible. Your financial contribution supports our efforts to deliver quality, locally relevant journalism.

Now more than ever, your support is critical to help us keep our community informed about the evolving coronavirus pandemic and the impact it is having locally. Every contribution, however large or small, will make a difference.

Each donation will be used exclusively for the development and creation of increased news coverage.