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Updates on the COVID-19 are flooding in every day, and while it may seem overwhelming at times, it is of the utmost importance to stay informed. Cases of the outbreak are increasing, and Gov. Polis has issued an executive order to all nonessential Colorado businesses,and Mayor Hancock just announced a Stay-at-Home order for Denver.

The executive order mandates a 50-percent reduction of in-person workers and directs employers to implement tele-work options for their employees. The order takes effect on Tuesday, March 24 and is set to last until April 10. The stay-at-home order means in Denver, non-medical dispensaries, liquor stores, and retail stores will close and people will be encouraged not to gather in groups in public spaces like the park.  

Critical workplaces such as hospitals, banks, and grocery stores are exempt from the executive order. A full list of workplaces that are not required to be in compliance with this order has been provided by the Department of Public Health and Environment. This measure is a necessary precaution to reduce interaction and help prevent the spread of the virus. 

Gov. Polis issued this statement: “As long as I am in a position to lead Colorado’s response, I will continue to take bold steps and do everything in my power to protect our medical workers, limit the severity and duration of this crisis, and save the lives of Coloradans.” 

Related article: Coronavirus Response Package Enacted by Congress

Incidence rates are exponentially increasing throughout Colorado, the United States, and the rest of the world. South Korea has had the most effective response to the virus thus far, initiating a 24/7 emergency response system as soon as the outbreak began in China. The Korean government used what may be considered invasive technology to track infected individuals via data compiled through smartphones. However, South Korea has seen a significant drop in new cases which can be attributed to their rigorous methods.

The United States are now attempting to imitate South Korea’s efforts, although many health officials are aware that we did not act preemptively or quickly enough. Despite America’s delayed response to this pandemic, it is now crucial to take the threat of the virus seriously, especially for those young and healthy populations, as they have a high potential to be carriers of the virus without showing symptoms. Social distancing is the only way to stop the spread of the virus to those who are at a higher risk.