DEAR EDITOR:

On Sept. 8, I received (and I expect many of your readers received) an email from the Telluride Regional Medical Center. That email stated, “At present, seven staff members at the clinic have tested positive for COVID-19 over the past six days.”

It appears that the frequent claim made by many politicians, (including Joe Biden) that, “We have a pandemic of the unvaccinated,” is inaccurate, if not an outright lie.

In the medical center’s email, it stated that all seven staff members who had tested positive recently were vaccinated. It further stated that nearly 98 percent of the medical center’s staff had been vaccinated, so that probably means all but one employee of the medical center was vaccinated.

The email from the medical center also stated this, “Vaccines continue to be highly protective against serious illness, hospitalization and death.” You will notice there was no mention in this sentence that vaccines protect you from getting the virus, because vaccines obviously don’t keep you from getting COVID-19.

For the last 18 months, the medical center has probably been requiring all visitors and patients to wear masks when entering. I would think that all medical center employees have been wearing masks for the past 18 months. I would also think that during most of the past 18 months the employees at the medical center had N95 masks, were given training on how to use them and changed them at least daily. The medical center is probably the most sanitized facility in Telluride. Furthermore, the staff has been trained on proper procedures to minimize disease transmission, and finally, they have the full complement of other personal protective equipment, such as gloves and other protective clothing.

With all these resources (vaccinations, superior personal protective equipment, training, experience and sanitized facility), still seven of their staff contacted COVID-19 within one week’s time.

So, the question becomes, How effective do you think the cheap cloth masks and neck gators you wear, often for multiple days or weeks without changing or washing, stuffed into your pocket or purse, dropped on the floor, thrown on the dashboard or car seat, put on backward, etc., are going to be in keeping you from getting COVID-19, when fully vaccinated medical staff members with significant virus-avoiding resources, still contract COVID-19?

Dan Agan

Mountain Village