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Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent


Global Warming

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent

Sign posted in Fort Collins restaurant on May 11, 2020. (Photo by Tina Griego) This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first spread through Colorado, visit this page. May 11,…

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent
Sign posted in Fort Collins restaurant on May 11, 2020. (Photo by Tina Griego)

This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first spread through Colorado, visit this page.

May 11, 4:05 p.m. update:

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 10 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 19,879 cases*
  • 3,663 hospitalized
  • 60 counties
  • 106,761 people tested**
  • 192 confirmed outbreaks
  • 987 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

May 11, 3:30 p.m. update:

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is suspending the license of the C&C Coffee and Kitchen in Castle Rock indefinitely after the restaurant opened on Mother’s Day in defiance of the governor’s public health orders, Gov. Jared Polis announced on Monday. 

During a press conference with reporters at the state Capitol, Polis said he was disappointed after watching the videos of the packed restaurant online. He said he was thinking about all the moms and grandmothers whose lives were put at an increased risk of dying from the virus as a result. He choked up when he mentioned his mom, whom he said he did not take out to lunch on Mother’s Day. He said he loves her far too much to put her life at risk by visiting a busy restaurant operating illegally. 

“We’re walking a tightrope between protecting all of our health and of course trying to grow our economy. It’s hard enough to walk without folks shaking the rope because of their own ideology or anti-scientific views which they choose over the lives of our brothers and sisters,” Polis said. 

He added, “If the state didn’t act and more businesses followed suit, it’s a near guarantee that people would lose their lives.”

Polis also announced camping can resume in the state’s parks starting on Tuesday, unless county orders prohibit it. Camping can only be done through reservation, and Polis said campers should minimize their interactions with others. 

“Fill up your automobile in your local area, get the supplies you need from stores in your local area — including food — and then yes you can go hike or you can go camp and return home,” Polis said. 

He said he doesn’t want campers infecting local communities that have reduced infections or bringing the virus back to their homes from their trips. 

Restaurants should expect a decision on whether they can gradually reopen by May 25, the governor said. May 25 is about one month after the safer-at-home order took effect, which is the amount of time needed for social distancing effectiveness to show up in the data, Polis said. The reason is that it can take up to two weeks for an infected person to be recorded in the state’s database because of the incubation period of the virus and testing logistics, Polis said. And he said he wants to see how the virus is spreading after two or three cycles of infection. 

Polis said he expects to have the data to decide if summer camps can open on May 25, as well. 

“Always subject to change and always subject to phase-ins,” Polis said of the timelines. 

May 11, 1:45 p.m. update: 

The Tri-County Health Department ordered the closure of C&C Breakfast & Korean Kitchen in Castle Rock on Monday afternoon. The restaurant opens Mother’s Day in defiance of the governor’s public health orders.

“If the restaurant refuses to follow Governor Jared Polis’ public health order, further legal action will be taken that could include revocation of the restaurant’s license,” the health department said in a statement.

May 10 5:10 p.m. update:

C&C Coffee and Kitchen in Castle Rock opened for business on Sunday in violation of Gov. Jared Polis’s executive orders designed to manage the spread of COVID-19.

In a video taken by Colorado Community Media’s Nick Puckett, the restaurant appears to be completely full, with a line stretching out of the door.

Happy Mother’s Day from C& C in Castle Rock, where the owner said this is almost double a normal Mother’s Day. pic.twitter.com/cPSzjmAfAg

— Nick Puckett (@nick__puckett) May 10, 2020

C&C owner April Arellano wrote on Facebook that “I will go out of business if I don’t do something.” House Minority Leader Patrick Neville, who has called on Douglas County to severe ties with the local health department over its COVID-19-related public health orders, posted a photo on Facebook of him posing with Arellano at the restaurant on Sunday.

Under the state’s safer-at-home orders, restaurants can’t offer dine-in service and Polis has said businesses that violate the orders face their licenses being revoked.

“These restaurants are not only breaking the law, they are endangering the lives of their staff, customers, and community,” said Polis’s deputy press secretary Shelby Wieman in a statement to The Denver Post.

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 9 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 19,703 cases*
  • 3,631 hospitalized
  • 60 counties
  • 104,077 people tested**
  • 190 confirmed outbreaks
  • 971 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

May 10, 11:21 a.m. update:

Lawmakers have extended their recess until May 26 in order “to give additional time for preparations including safety protocols, to work through appropriate legislation, and to seek greater clarity on potential Congressional action that could significantly impact our state budget,” according to a news release from House and Senate Democrats.

The original plan was to return to the Capitol on May 18.

The Joint Budget Committee this week has been going through each state department’s budget and making cuts. The extra week will give budget writers more time to backfill a multi-billion dollar budget shortfall caused by the economic fallout of the COVID-19 response.

“Last week our Joint Budget Committee had to begin the heart-wrenching process of rewriting Colorado’s budget after COVID-19 created a more than $3 billion revenue shortfall,” said Senate President Leroy Garcia, a Democrat from Pueblo, in a statement. “With so much at risk and our desired return date fast approaching, we determined that it would benefit all Coloradans if we gave our budgetary and legislative process a bit more breathing room. Though facing our dire fiscal situation has been a painful task, we are committed to protecting our most critical institutions and vulnerable populations as best as we possibly can. We look forward to continuing to fight for our communities in the Capitol when we all return on May 26.”

May 9, 5:07 p.m. update: 

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 8 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 19,375 cases*
  • 3,623 hospitalized
  • 59 counties
  • 100,610 people tested**
  • 188 confirmed outbreaks
  • 967 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

May 8, 5:15 p.m. update: 

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 7 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 18,827 cases*
  • 3,600 hospitalized
  • 59 counties
  • 96,772 people tested**
  • 184 confirmed outbreaks
  • 960 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

May 8, 3:00 p.m. update:

Gov. Jared Polis answered questions from the media on Friday in a virtual press conference, following a request for Coloradans to wear masks whenever they are in public during the safer-at-home order.

Here are a few of the highlights.

  • Polis fielded a question about testing at the JBS meatpacking plant in Greeley, which has the largest confirmed outbreak of COVID-19 cases in Colorado, with 280 cases and at least 7 workers who have died from the disease, according to data from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

JBS, in conjunction with the state, originally planned to test every worker at the plant, but broke that promise and instead opted to shut down to disinfect. Polis said the state set up a testing site for workers and community members in Greeley less than a mile away from the plant. The site tested more than 1,000 people, he said. The plant employs 6,000 people.

“If the company is interested in more testing, we’d be happy to work with them to get the testing they need,” Polis said. 

The governor, answering another question about JBS, added “if they need to be closed again, we are confident that we have the tools to be able to do that.”

  • When asked by a reporter why the state isn’t testing all nursing homes and nursing home employees, Polis said the state is using the National Guard and help from Colorado State University to work towards a goal of testing 45,000 workers at nursing homes. Testing at nursing homes continues to be one of the top priorities of the state, Polis said. 
  • The governor responded to a question asking what standards the state will use to decide whether stricter measures are appropriate. Polis said the standards are similar to those the state used at the start of the outbreak in March  — ensuring hospitals aren’t overwhelmed. The state will be looking at hospitalization rates, but hospitalization can happen days or weeks after infection, he said, making it a less useful data point when deciding whether to lockdown again. The number of diagnosed cases, testing results and Coloradans’ distancing effectiveness  — using cell phone and traffic data — are more responsive indicators of the severity of the virus, Polis said. 

May 8, 11:15 a.m. update: 

Criminal justice advocates are calling on Gov. Jared Polis to help release thousands of inmates by ordering commutations and parole reforms. The goal is to allow for at least single-cell occupancy in the state’s prisons, according to a May 8 letter from ACLU Colorado and others.

“Colorado just abolished the death penalty. We cannot keep elderly and medically vulnerable Coloradans incarcerated in prisons that are likely to become their death traps,” the letter states.

Colorado’s prison population has dropped to the lowest level in decades. But the process for releasing inmates during the pandemic has been slow. And some with underlying health issues are not being considered for early release, advocates say.

The parole reforms include suspending a requirement that people have to have an approved parole plan prior to review by the parole board and to allow people who require victim notifications to be eligible for early release.

The letter also calls on the Polis administration to implement more widespread testing in the state’s prisons.

Another reason to release inmates, according to the letter, is the disproportionate impact of COVID-19 on people of color, who are overrepresented in the state’s prison system. Here’s a breakdown (inmate population (Colorado population)):

White: 45.8% (87%)


Black: 17.5% (4.6%)


Latino: 32% (21.7%)


Native American: 3.5% (1.6%)

“In prison, as in the broader community, people of color will suffer the most from COVID-19. Black people account for less than 4% of Colorado’s population and yet, account for 7.6% of all COVID-19 cases and 7% of all deaths. Colorado’s Latinx population is similarly disproportionately impacted. Latinx people represent just over 21% of Colorado’s population, but account for 35% of COVID-19 cases. Because of historic and systemic racism in our criminal legal system and historic disinvestment in communities of color, Black, Latinx, and Indigenous people are dramatically overrepresented in prisons. Thus, infections, serious illness, and deaths among incarcerated people will inevitably fall most heavily upon incarcerated people of color, who are also disproportionately represented among vulnerable populations with diabetes, heart disease, respiratory disease, and other conditions with COVID-19 comorbidity,” the letter states.

May 7, 6:30 p.m. update

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 6 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 18,371 cases*
  • 3,557 hospitalized
  • 59 counties
  • 92,267 people tested**
  • 178 confirmed outbreaks
  • 944 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

May 7 3:35 p.m. update:

Coloradans are experiencing a heightened level of stress, anxiety and emotional distress because of the pandemic, a phenomenon mental health care providers say they are trying to separate from clinical mental problems.  

It’s normal to feel those heightened negative emotions right now, Brad Sjostrom, manager of West Pines Behavioral Health, said in a virtual town hall with mental health care providers and Democratic lawmakers on Thursday. No one has been through something like the pandemic, he said. Just because someone is anxious right now, doesn’t mean they will go on to develop a mental health condition, he said. 

But, “if we feel overwhelmed to the point that we’re not functioning, it’s good to seek mental help,” Sjostrom said. 

As a collective crisis, the pandemic requires people to lean on each other, Vincent Atchity, CEO of Mental Health Colorado, said. The more that everyone can form personal networks of friends and family to speak to, the more providers can be freed up to address serious mental health needs. 

Mental health care providers have switched many services to telehealth, a transition that has been positive, Sjostrom said. The transition was made possible through executive orders from Gov. Jared Polis and relaxation of other federal and state telehealth regulations. Telehealth is not a catch-all, Sjostrom and other providers said, but it does allow providers to extend their reach. 

“For those who want to do in-person treatment, it will be available at some point,” Sjostrom said. 

For more on how telehealth has impacted substance abuse disorder treatment in Colorado, read our story here.

Rep. Dafna Michaelson Jenet of Aurora and Rep. Jonathan Singer of Boulder represented the Colorado House Public Health Care and Human Services Committee on the video call. Singer said the Colorado legislature recognizes the possible benefits of telehealth in treating mental health needs. Polis’s executive orders relaxing telehealth regulations will provide an “excellent template” when the legislature reconvenes on May 18, Singer said.  

May 7, 1:00 p.m. update:

More than 41,000 more Coloradans filed for unemployment last week, the lowest weekly total in the past six weeks. 

In all, more than 419,000 claims have been filed over the past six weeks, and more than 33 million unemployment claims have been filed nationally. 

Colorado paid out more than $84 million in benefits last week. Compare that to the height of the great recession — between 2009 and 2010 — where an average of $19 million in benefits were paid out by the state weekly. Coloradans have also received more than $407 million from the federal government in $600 weekly payments on top of their regular benefits and the new benefits for independent contractors since April 20, according to the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment (CDLE). 

CDLE broke down the industries with the most workers filing for unemployment. There is a two-week lag. Here is the most recent data from the week ending on April 18. 

Top 5 industries with highest claims:

Accommodation and Food Services: 5,283

Retail Trade: 5,092

Healthcare and Social Service*: 3,775  

Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services**: 1,907

Arts, Entertainment and Recreation: 1,819

*According to CDLE, most of the claims from workers in healthcare and social services come from daycares and physician and dentist offices. 

**Administrative and support and waste management and remediation services include temporary help services, telemarketing centers and janitorial and landscaping services. 

May 7, 11:55 p.m. update: 

The state is planning to keep its two alternative care sites on standby into the fall in case there is a second wave of COVID-19 hospitalizations that exceeds hospital capacity, according to Kevin Klein, the director for the state’s Division of Homeland Security and Emergency Management. 

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“Our target is to have them ready to go if we need them,” Klein told reporters on Thursday. “We’re planning for the worst, hoping for the best.”

He said the state plans to have a 200-bed alternative care site at The Ranch in Loveland ready by June 11 and the 250-bed site at the Colorado Convention Center in Denver ready by June 4. The Denver site was initially planned to have 2,000 beds.

These dates could be pushed out again. 

“What we don’t want to do is put any additional costs in by staffing those facilities. We will keep looking at what the data tell us and what our hospital capacity is,” Klein said. 

The other alternative sites — St. Anthony’s North 84th Avenue Facility in Westminster, St. Mary-Corwin Medical Center in Pueblo and Western Slope Memory Care in Grand Junction — should all be ready in late June or early July, according to health officials.

Klein said state models predict there may be a second wave of COVID-19 cases peaking in the fall. 

May 6, 4:35 p.m. update

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 5 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 17,830 cases*
  • 2,986 hospitalized
  • 57 counties
  • 89,529 people tested**
  • 174 confirmed outbreaks
  • 921 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

May 6, 12:40 p.m. update: 

At least 8 meatpacking plant workers have died of COVID-19 in Colorado, the Department of Public Health and Environment confirmed Wednesday. 

At the JBS beef plant in Greeley at least 280 workers have been diagnosed with COVID-19, state data show, making it the state’s largest confirmed COVID-19 outbreak location. On Wednesday, the state confirmed the seventh death at the plant related to the disease. At least 60 workers at the Cargill Meat Solutions plant in Fort Morgan have also tested positive for COVID-19. One of those workers has died, according to state health officials.

May 5, 4:50 p.m. update:

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 4 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 17,364 cases*
  • 2,919 hospitalized
  • 56 counties
  • 85,976 people tested**
  • 170 confirmed outbreaks
  • 903 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

May 5, 3:00 p.m. update:

Denver Mayor Michael Hancock and officials confirmed that the city’s businesses will be able to operate under largely the same guidelines as the statewide safer-at-home orders starting Saturday. 

“We are in a good place to take the next step,” Bob McDonald, executive director of Denver’s public health department, said at a press conference. 

Retail and commercial businesses will be able to open at 50% customer and employee capacity, Hancock said. At salons, tattoo parlors and barbers, business must be conducted by appointment only and with a capacity of 50% or fewer than 10 customers, whichever amount is less. 

Playgrounds, recreation centers and basketball courts will still be closed, along with dine-in service at restaurants and bars. Hancock said the city can’t offer a timeframe when bars and restaurants can start to open up. 

McDonald acknowledged that the city is still seeing new infections of the coronavirus, but more importantly, he noted, the hospitalization rate is currently as low as it was at the beginning of the outbreak. 

Denver is training 45 contact tracers to track the spread of infections, which will help the city start to gradually open. The city also launched a mobile testing unit on Tuesday, and is planning on launching six more, McDonald said. The mobile tests will be free. 

Denver’s mandatory mask requirement starts on Wednesday, which officials say will be enforced. The city is asking area businesses to help enforce the order, but asks that businesses don’t get into confrontations with customers, according to Kristin Bronson, Denver city attorney.

May 4, 4:45 p.m. update:

On Sunday, protesters formed caravans in the neighborhoods around the homes of John Fabbricatore, acting field director for the ICE Denver office, and Johnny Choate, warden of the GEO Group-run ICE detention center in Aurora. 

The protesters demanded that ICE free all of the detainees at the Aurora facility. As of April 24, five workers at the facility tested positive for the coronavirus and no detainees have tested positive. ICE released eight medically vulnerable detainees on April 15.

Some of the exchanges on Sunday were recorded and shared to the Abolish ICE Facebook page here. The page’s administrators accused counterprotesters of stealing signs, damaging their vehicles and assaulting activists during the protest. 

This is the second time in less than a year anti-ICE activists have protested in front of Choate’s home. On Sept. 19, 2019, activists, police and counter-protesters clashed outside of the warden’s home resulting in three arrests.

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 3 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 16,907 cases*
  • 2,838 hospitalized
  • 56 counties
  • 83,266 people tested**
  • 163 confirmed outbreaks***
  • 851 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

***The total amount of outbreaks reported is less than the number reported on April 29. CDPHE’s website doesn’t provide a reason for the drop.

May 4, 2:45 p.m. update: 

Some businesses on Monday can begin reopening with a 50% in-person workforce. And on Friday, counties across the state will be lifting stay-at-home orders. As a result, many Coloradans will be able to return to work. But what about those who fear for their health going to work?

A reporter asked Gov. Jared Polis about this on Monday during a press briefing at the state Capitol. He replied, “Nobody can be compelled to go to work. That’s a very important statement to make.” He added that there are benefits under the federal CARES Act available to workers who are unemployed. 

Colorado is an “employment-at-will” state, meaning employers can fire employees without reason or notice.  

Separately, the governor announced a state map of testing locations. Here’s a link

May 4 10:30 a.m. update: 

Democratic lawmakers have abandoned their effort to set up a new health insurance plan known as the “Colorado Option,” similar to public option plans that are tightly regulated by the government, in part due to the complications of getting public input during the pandemic.

“This is simply not possible right now. A successful Colorado Option needs the input of our frontline workers & right now they need to focus on taking care of patients & themselves. I know this is the right policy to address the rising cost of care & lack of insurance choice,” tweeted Sen. Kerry Donovan, a Democrat from Vail who was sponsoring the bill.

Lawmakers will be in a pinch when they reconvene on May 18, struggling to find money in a state budget crippled by the economic fallout of the pandemic at a time when they say government assistance is needed most. Over the past five weeks, more than 358,489 Coloradans have filed for unemployment, according to the Department of Labor and Employment. Rep. Dillon Roberts, who was also sponsoring the bill, tweeted Monday, “A pandemic that causes thousands to lose employer-based health coverage clearly illustrates the need for a Colorado Option.”

Lawmakers last week also dropped a bill to set up a paid family and medical leave program in Colorado. This year marks the sixth attempt at passing such a program.

The Joint Budget Committee is meeting today to begin working on the state budget, which faces a multi-billion shortfall due to a drop in revenue from personal income and sales taxes. Five of the six JBC members were wearing face masks while meeting except for Rep. Kim Ransom, a Republican from Littleton.

May 3, 5:20 p.m. update:

On April 30, after traveling to work in New York City during to COVID-19 pandemic on the medical emergency front lines, Aurora paramedic Paul Cary died at the age of 66. He was flown to the Denver International Airport on Sunday and escorted to the Olinger Hampden Funeral Home & Cemetery.

Gov. Jared Polis said in a statement, “Paul Cary served his community, and his country, heroically, and I am incredibly saddened by his passing. During a time of great need, he selflessly volunteered to travel thousands of miles from his home to help others. He risked his own health and safety, and stepped up to do what he could. This is a difficult time for so many Coloradans, and so many Americans. I can never express just how grateful I am for people like Paul, and all our emergency responders who are on the front lines of this virus. Paul dedicated his life to the service of others, and he will be greatly missed.”

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 2 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 16,635 cases*
  • 2,799 hospitalized
  • 56 counties
  • 81,352 people tested**
  • 163 confirmed outbreaks***
  • 842 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

***The total amount of outbreaks reported is less than the number reported on April 29. CDPHE’s website doesn’t provide a reason for the drop.

May 2, 6:15 p.m. update: 

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through May 1 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 16,225 cases*
  • 2,793 hospitalized
  • 56 counties
  • 78,179 people tested**
  • 163 confirmed outbreaks***
  • 832 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

***The total amount of outbreaks reported is less than the number reported on April 29. CDPHE’s website doesn’t provide a reason for the drop.

May 1, 9 p.m. update: 

An 86-year-old male prison inmate died at the Sterling Regional Medical Center on Friday after experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, the Department of Corrections (DOC) said. DOC said he was tested for COVID-19 while at the hospital and the official cause of death will come from the coroner’s office.

DOC said the inmate had been housed on the east side of the Sterling Correctional Facility, a prison where 241 inmates and 11 employees have had lab-confirmed COVID-19.

DOC said it will not be releasing his name at this time.

May 1, 5:20 p.m. update: 

The City and County of Denver will be issuing an order requiring residents to wear face coverings on May 6, according to city officials. 

Denver residents must wear a face covering when they are in or in-line at a retail or critical business, receiving any healthcare services or using public transportation. Workers in retail, commercial or other critical businesses must also wear a mask if their work requires them to come in contact with people or food. The order includes rideshare, taxi and other transportation drivers who must also wear masks when driving. 

A face covering is not required if it would harm a person’s health or if a worker is in a private office. The coverings can be made of any type of porous material that covers the nose and mouth, as long as they don’t have one-way plastic valves. According to the Denver’s public health department, plastic valves allow droplets to be released into the air from breathing. 

Violators could face a fine of up to $999 under the May 6 order, which will continue “until further notice.”

For more clarification, state officials say Gov. Jared Polis’ decision to cut Colorado’s Medicaid program by $183 million on Thursday was offset by earlier federal funding.

Portions of the federal coronavirus stimulus bills gave the Colorado Medicaid program $182 million to offset new enrollment costs to the program, according to Kim Bimestefer, executive director of the Colorado Department of Healthcare Policy and Financing (HCPF), which oversees the state’s Medicaid program. There won’t be any changes to benefits or services until the next budget year, Bimestefer said, because the state won’t need to pay for the costs from new enrollment until the new budget year starts in July. 

HCPF estimates that Medicaid will see more than 437,000 new enrollees to the state’s public health insurance programs because of COVID-19, and projects the federal government will add another $100 million in funding next year for the department, Bimestefer said. 

The state government’s budget will have an estimated $3.2 billion shortfall next year, and the department doesn’t yet have accurate projections on the cost of those new enrollees. 

To cover any possible funding shortfalls, Bimestefer said HCPF has set up a plan to prioritize cuts next year, starting with those with the least impact on low-income enrollees.HCPF will also be pushing for more telehealth options in the future to cut costs, she said.

May 1, 4:05 p.m. update:

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through April 29 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 15,768 cases*
  • 2,747 hospitalized
  • 56 counties
  • 75,249 people tested**
  • 161 confirmed outbreaks***
  • 820 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

***The total amount of outbreaks reported is less than the number from April 29. CDPHE’s website doesn’t provide a reason for the drop.

May 1, 9 a.m. update: 

Gov. Jared Polis joined most states across the U.S. in placing a moratorium on evictions for renters late Thursday night.

The order says no person “shall remove or exclude a tenant from a premises or enter a premises to remove or exclude personal property of a tenant from the premises” or “execute or enforce a writ of restitution, possession judgment, or order.” This means sheriffs will not be allowed to serve a court-ordered evictions.

Landlords are also prohibited from charging late fees or penalties for any breach of the terms of a lease or rental agreement due to nonpayment, the order states.

The order expires in 30 days.

The executive order came as part of a series issued at 9:30 p.m. on Thursday. In one order, Polis immediately suspended state spending for the remainder of the fiscal year, cutting $229 million from this year’s budget. The order did not mandate any furloughs or layoffs, according to the Office of State Planning and Budgeting. The majority of the cuts — $183 million come from Medicaid services

Another order directs the executive director of the Health Care Policy and Financing Department to increase payments to nursing facilities and other provider-owned residential settings. Deaths at nursing homes and long-term care facilities account for about half of the COVID-19 deaths in Colorado.

Yet another order allows Colorado’s health care providers to widely use telehealth services for another month, including phone and video calls. The state originally relaxed regulations to allow telehealth to be billed to Medicaid and private insurance in most situations.

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Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent

A reader directed us to this thank you cow. Along 6th Avenue in Denver on Apr. 11, 2020. (Photo by: Alison Cooper) This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first…

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent
A reader directed us to this
A reader directed us to this thank you cow. Along 6th Avenue in Denver on Apr. 11, 2020. (Photo by: Alison Cooper)

This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first spread through Colorado, visit this page.

May 1, 9 p.m. update: 

An 86-year-old male prison inmate died at the Sterling Regional Medical Center on Friday after experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, the Department of Corrections (DOC) said. DOC said he was tested for COVID-19 while at the hospital and the official cause of death will come from the coroner’s office.

DOC said the inmate had been housed on the east side of the Sterling Correctional Facility, a prison where 241 inmates and 11 employees have had lab-confirmed COVID-19.

DOC said it will not be releasing his name at this time.

May 1, 5:20 p.m. update: 

The City and County of Denver will be issuing an order requiring residents to wear face coverings on May 6, according to city officials. 

Denver residents must wear a face covering when they are in or in-line at a retail or critical business, receiving any healthcare services or using public transportation. Workers in retail, commercial or other critical businesses must also wear a mask if their work requires them to come in contact with people or food. The order includes rideshare, taxi and other transportation drivers who must also wear masks when driving. 

A face covering is not required if it would harm a person’s health or if a worker is in a private office. The coverings can be made of any type of porous material that covers the nose and mouth, as long as they don’t have one-way plastic valves. According to the Denver’s public health department, plastic valves allow droplets to be released into the air from breathing. 

Violators could face a fine of up to $999 under the May 6 order, which will continue “until further notice.”

For more clarification, state officials say Gov. Jared Polis’ decision to cut Colorado’s Medicaid program by $183 million on Thursday was offset by earlier federal funding.

Portions of the federal coronavirus stimulus bills gave the Colorado Medicaid program $182 million to offset new enrollment costs to the program, according to Kim Bimestefer, executive director of the Colorado Department of Healthcare Policy and Financing (HCPF), which oversees the state’s Medicaid program. There won’t be any changes to benefits or services until the next budget year, Bimestefer said, because the state won’t need to pay for the costs from new enrollment until the new budget year starts in July. 

HCPF estimates that Medicaid will see more than 437,000 new enrollees to the state’s public health insurance programs because of COVID-19, and projects the federal government will add another $100 million in funding next year for the department, Bimestefer said. 

The state government’s budget will have an estimated $3.2 billion shortfall next year, and the department doesn’t yet have accurate projections on the cost of those new enrollees. 

To cover any possible funding shortfalls, Bimestefer said HCPF has set up a plan to prioritize cuts next year, starting with those with the least impact on low-income enrollees.HCPF will also be pushing for more telehealth options in the future to cut costs, she said.

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May 1, 4:05 p.m. update:

Here are some of the latest numbers on COVID-19 in Colorado from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. According to CDPHE, this summary only includes data through April 29 and does not reflect cases since then.

  • 15,768 cases*
  • 2,747 hospitalized
  • 56 counties
  • 75,249 people tested**
  • 161 confirmed outbreaks***
  • 820 deaths

*According to CDPHE: “Positive cases include people who tested positive, as well as cases where epidemiological investigation has determined that there is a high likelihood that an untested individual has COVID-19 due to their symptoms and close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.”

**The total number of people tested may not include all negative results.

***The total amount of outbreaks reported is less than the number from April 29. CDPHE’s website doesn’t provide a reason for the drop.

May 1, 9 a.m. update: 

Gov. Jared Polis joined most states across the U.S. in placing a moratorium on evictions for renters late Thursday night.

The order says no person “shall remove or exclude a tenant from a premises or enter a premises to remove or exclude personal property of a tenant from the premises” or “execute or enforce a writ of restitution, possession judgment, or order.” This means sheriffs will not be allowed to serve a court-ordered evictions.

Landlords are also prohibited from charging late fees or penalties for any breach of the terms of a lease or rental agreement due to nonpayment, the order states.

The order expires in 30 days.

The executive order came as part of a series issued at 9:30 p.m. on Thursday. In one order, Polis immediately suspended state spending for the remainder of the fiscal year, cutting $229 million from this year’s budget. The order did not mandate any furloughs or layoffs, according to the Office of State Planning and Budgeting. The majority of the cuts — $183 million come from Medicaid services

Another order directs the executive director of the Health Care Policy and Financing Department to increase payments to nursing facilities and other provider-owned residential settings. Deaths at nursing homes and long-term care facilities account for about half of the COVID-19 deaths in Colorado.

Yet another order allows Colorado’s health care providers to widely use telehealth services for another month, including phone and video calls. The state originally relaxed regulations to allow telehealth to be billed to Medicaid and private insurance in most situations.

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Save Our Planet

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent

A reader directed us to this thank you cow. Along 6th Avenue in Denver on Apr. 11, 2020. (Photo by: Alison Cooper) This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first…

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent
A reader directed us to this
A reader directed us to this thank you cow. Along 6th Avenue in Denver on Apr. 11, 2020. (Photo by: Alison Cooper)

This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first spread through Colorado, visit this page.

May 1, 9 a.m. update: 

Gov. Jared Polis joined most states across the U.S. in placing a moratorium on evictions for renters late Thursday night.

The order says no person “shall remove or exclude a tenant from a premises or enter a premises to remove or exclude personal property of a tenant from the premises” or “execute or enforce a writ of restitution, possession judgment, or order.” This means sheriffs will not be allowed to serve a court-ordered evictions.

Landlords are also prohibited from charging late fees or penalties for any breach of the terms of a lease or rental agreement due to nonpayment, the order states.

The order expires in 30 days.

Real Life. Real News. Real Voices

Help us tell more of the stories that matter

Become a founding member

The executive order came as part of a series issued at 9:30 p.m. on Thursday. In one order, Polis immediately suspended state spending for the remainder of the fiscal year, cutting $229 million from this year’s budget. The order did not mandate any furloughs or layoffs, according to the Office of State Planning and Budgeting. The majority of the cuts — $183 million come from Medicaid services

Another order directs the executive director of the Health Care Policy and Financing Department to increase payments to nursing facilities and other provider-owned residential settings. Deaths at nursing homes and long-term care facilities account for about half of the COVID-19 deaths in Colorado.

Yet another order allows Colorado’s health care providers to widely use telehealth services for another month, including phone and video calls. The state originally relaxed regulations to allow telehealth to be billed to Medicaid and private insurance in most situations.

Subscribe to the newsletter news

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Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Save Our Planet

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent

A reader directed us to this thank you cow. Along 6th Avenue in Denver on Apr. 11, 2020. (Photo by: Alison Cooper) This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first…

Update: The latest on COVID-19 in Colorado – The Colorado Independent
A reader directed us to this
A reader directed us to this thank you cow. Along 6th Avenue in Denver on Apr. 11, 2020. (Photo by: Alison Cooper)

This story was originally published on March 5 and will be updated daily. For earlier updates during the month of April, visit this page. For updates from March, when COVID-19 began to first spread through Colorado, visit this page.

May 1, 9 a.m. update: 

Gov. Jared Polis joined most states across the U.S. in placing a moratorium on evictions for renters late Thursday night.

The order says no person “shall remove or exclude a tenant from a premises or enter a premises to remove or exclude personal property of a tenant from the premises” or “execute or enforce a writ of restitution, possession judgment, or order.” This means sheriffs will not be allowed to serve a court-ordered evictions.

Landlords are also prohibited from charging late fees or penalties for any breach of the terms of a lease or rental agreement due to nonpayment, the order states.

The order expires in 30 days.

Real Life. Real News. Real Voices

Help us tell more of the stories that matter

Become a founding member

The executive order came as part of a series issued at 9:30 p.m. on Thursday. In one order, Polis immediately suspended state spending for the remainder of the fiscal year, cutting $229 million from this year’s budget. The order did not mandate any furloughs or layoffs, according to the Office of State Planning and Budgeting. The majority of the cuts — $183 million come from Medicaid services

Another order directs the executive director of the Health Care Policy and Financing Department to increase payments to nursing facilities and other provider-owned residential settings. Deaths at nursing homes and long-term care facilities account for about half of the COVID-19 deaths in Colorado.

Yet another order allows Colorado’s health care providers to widely use telehealth services for another month, including phone and video calls. The state originally relaxed regulations to allow telehealth to be billed to Medicaid and private insurance in most situations.

Subscribe to the newsletter news

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