Colorado coronavirus cases reach highest levels since end of July
DENVER — Confirmed COVID-19 cases in Colorado have increased for the third consecutive week, reaching levels last registered at the end of July, health officials said.
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reported 3,439 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the week ending Sunday, showing an increase of about 1,100 cases compared to the previous week, the Denver Post reported.
The state has not reported that many cases since the week of July 27.
About 3.4% of COVID-19 tests came back positive, averaged over three days, but remained below the 5% threshold where experts begin to worry the state could miss detecting a significant number of cases, health officials said.
Colorado School of Public Health professor Beth Carlton said the rate can be attributed to the increased testing and the spread of the virus on college campuses.
Boulder County accounted for about one in every five newly confirmed cases last week. The announcement came after the University of Colorado Boulder said Monday that it would move to online classes for at least two weeks because of an increasing number of infections.
More than 65,000 people have tested positive for COVID-19 statewide since March and more than 7,300 have been hospitalized. About 1,900 people died directly from the virus, while 2,000 people have died with it in their system.
The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia, and death.
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A half-million Coloradans have already signed up for the state’s new coronavirus-tracking notification tool
About 10% of Colorado’s population are using the new tool, called Exposure Notifications, which officials hope will improve their contact-tracing efforts.