As we enter autumn, amidst our vibrant colors and lower temperatures, we can now look back on our summer and celebrate that we were able to thrive and again enjoy so much of what we love about Aspen. Now, with our schools successfully in session, we can look forward to the holidays and a robust winter season. We, as humans and as a community, desperately want and need to live free of fear and limitations related to COVID-19; and high (and higher) vaccination rates as a community will provide us with that ability, along with other continued preventive measures as our population fluxes with visitors.
COVID-19 is not behind us, not yet, as we noted a few weeks ago when the indoor mask mandates were necessitated by high community incidence rates and consequent stresses on the Hospital that moved us to “cautious” status. Aspen Valley Hospital has just returned to a “comfortable” status, as our community incidence rates fell off, but they are still stubbornly remaining well above the high-risk threshold. Through our partnership with Pitkin County Public Health, Aspen Valley Hospital and our physicians will do our part to contribute in every way we can to not just keep our community healthy, but also to support our community’s vibrancy, which are inextricably related.
Sensing that our readers, like us, are tired of talking about COVID and would rather focus on other aspects of life and health, we hope you find this edition of our enewsletter helpful. In it, we cover a range of topics that are both timely and relevant to you. Most notably, October plays host to Mental Health Awareness Day, on October 10, which has never been more important than now. Our community is suffering – in many cases silently and alone, and in some cases with tragic outcomes. Through our affiliation with Aspen Strong, and strong local partnerships, we continue to work to maintain an open dialogue, assure the afflicted that they are never alone, and provide information regarding resources and assistance. In this edition, we explain how we are endeavoring to remove the stigma and bring understanding to the mental health cause.
October is also Breast Cancer Awareness Month. We know that 1 in 8 women in the U.S. will develop breast cancer in their lifetime, and that more than 3.8 million women in the U.S. are being or have been treated for breast cancer. We provide some information that, we hope, will at least pique your interest and open discussion about what we as a community and as individuals can do to prevent, detect and treat breast cancer effectively.
And finally, this issue introduces you to our Board of Directors for AVH, our publicly elected representatives of the community whose vision guides the work we do and the goals we have set. Understanding who our Board is and how they think will provide you with some insights into how you can be confident that your community hospital is a good steward of our local resources, and your tax dollars. It is important to them, our Board members, that they serve you to the best of their ability, and that they are keeping you informed.
Please help us to maintain fresh and helpful contact via this enewsletter every month by letting us know what you want to know about and how we can do a better job with communicating. We are constantly striving to improve and build upon the trust that you have in us and what we do.