The overall number of new COVID-19 infections and hospitalizations in Colorado is falling, but public health officials cautioned Friday that the state is seeing “considerable variability” as they see a downward trend statewide or all. are not the same across age groups.
New cases have been declining across the state, and the number of people hospitalized in Colorado has also decreased in recent days. But the state’s COVID-19 incident commander Scott Bookman noted at a news briefing that the number of people hospitalized remains near the peak of the first wave in spring 2020.
As of Friday, 917 people with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 had been hospitalized statewide, down from 1,021, the high point of the fifth wave in mid-September. Twenty-eight percent of Colorado’s hospitalized COVID-19 patients are asymptomatic, according to state data.
“While we are seeing a fairly steady reduction in our hospitalizations, we are still at an incredibly high rate of hospitalizations where we want to be,” he said. “And so while we’re at the beginning of a downward trend here, we really need these hospitalizations before we’re going to feel comfortable with the hospital capacity that we have in cold weather.” start leaving and people start going inside the house.”
When it comes to transmission of the virus, most Colorado counties are seeing a decline in new cases, state epidemiologist Dr. Rachel Herlihy said during the briefing. But there are hopes, including in Moffat, Grand and Mesa counties, she said.
“Some transmission is high on the eastern plains,” Herlihy said. “The San Luis Valley definitely stands out here, it’s a place where we’re actually seeing rising rates where most states are seeing decreasing rates.”
Similarly, while most age groups are experiencing a decline in COVID-19 cases, new infections are on the rise among children who are too young to be vaccinated. Colorado’s highest rate of new infections in recent days was among children between the ages of 6 and 11, Hurley said. New cases are falling in adults and children between the ages of 12 and 17, a group that has recently become eligible to receive the vaccine.
“We’re probably starting to see a clear benefit of vaccination in that age group,” Herlihy said.
Since the start of the pandemic, Colorado has recorded 673,517 cases of COVID-19 and 7,887 deaths due to the virus, according to state data.
As of Friday more than 70% of eligible Coloradans were fully vaccinated.