(NBC News) Idaho’s Wood River Valley, home of Sun Valley and neighboring Ketchum, is a hot spot for outdoor recreation…and for coronaviruss.
The county has more cases per capita than New York City.
Ketchum’s mayor is pleading with visitors to stay away to preserve medical resources.
The local hospital has seen patient admission rates climb 20 percent due to COVID-19.
“If all the sudden we have the tourist volume that we might have in the summertime, or at the height of winter ski season, if a percentage of those people all got sick with COVID and needed to get admitted, that could overwhelm our hospital quickly,” warns Dr. Deb Robertson, director of the St. Luke’s Wood River Emergency Department.
It’s a scenario resort towns and vacation destination across the country are grappling with.
In Vermont hotels and short term rentals have closed to tourists.
One resort is posting reminders to skiers and snowboarders ahead of a late season not to sneak in a last run, because injuries would further stress already overworked medical staff.
In Hawaii, the National Guard is checking temperatures of arriving passengers. All are required to quarantine for two weeks, and tourists are being encouraged to postpone vacations.
The Star Advertiser reports the state has limited icu beds and ventilators.
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