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Colorado's Bad COVID-19 Data Gets Worse

Colorado's Bad COVID-19 Data Gets Worse
Denver7 via YouTube

Last week, when Governor Jared Polis conceded that Colorado's COVID-19 statistics related to cases and positivity rate were the worst since the pandemic began, he stressed the urgency of improving the numbers in the weeks before the impending holiday season, when family gatherings are expected to push them in the wrong direction again.

But as is clear from the latest Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment data, no corners have been turned nor curves flattened. Making matters worse, hospitalization figures haven't been this bad since last spring.

Here's the information in major categories from the CDPHE's 4 p.m. October 18 update, juxtaposed with stats from September 13, October 4 and October 11.

85,302 cases (up 6,841 from October 11, 12,226 from October 4 and 23,978 from September 13)
8,227 hospitalized  (up 334 from October 11, 557 from October 4 and 1,000 from September 13)
64 counties (unchanged from October 4, up one from September 13)
2,176 deaths among cases (up 63 from October 11, 108 from October 4 and 188 from September 13)
2,042 deaths due to COVID-19 (up 44 from October 11, 74 from October 4 and 153 from September 13)
946 outbreaks (up 82 from October 11, 148 from October 4 and 270 from September 13)

Each of these categories contains a shock. Cases up nearly 24,000 in five weeks. An even 1,000 more people hospitalized with the novel coronavirus over the same span. No county in Colorado spared. The number of patients dying with COVID up 63 in the past seven days, and fatalities specifically caused by the disease during that period rising by 44, making it the most deadly week in months. And the 82 additional outbreaks suggest that on October 21, when the next report is released, Colorado will set another ignominious record for the fourth week in a row.

Meanwhile, the positivity rate is 5.27 percent per 100,000 — an incremental increase from the 4.81 percent on October 11, but an important one. The World Health Organization considers a rate above five as a warning sign calling for additional measures and tightened restrictions. And the syndromic outpatient visits for COVID-19 in the last week stand at a staggering 11.62 percent; it was at 8.64 percent a week ago.

Diagnosed cases, meanwhile, continue to reach new heights, exceeding 1,000 four days over the past ten exceeding 1,000. The earlier record was 967 on April 23. Here are the numbers:

October 17 — 904
October 16 — 956
October 15 — 1,154
October 14 — 1,080
October 13 — 584
October 12 — 1,035
October 11 — 571
October 10 — 877
October 9 — 1,026
October 8 — 815

As you can see in this CDPHE graphic, the virus's third wave is reaching heights that exceed that of the earlier two.EXPAND
As you can see in this CDPHE graphic, the virus's third wave is reaching heights that exceed that of the earlier two.

Hospitalization spikes tend to lag behind cases by as much as two weeks because of the incubation period — but they, too, are climbing. Two key metrics are patients currently hospitalized for COVID-19 and the seven-day average of newly hospitalized patients with the virus. For the ten days preceding October 11, the former ranged from 296 to 383; now it's between 365 and 445. On October 11, admissions topped out at an average of forty per day over the prior ten. The most recent average, in contrast, is 59.

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Here are the specifics:

Patients Currently Hospitalized for COVID-19

October 18, 2020
445 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
348 (78%) Confirmed COVID-19
97 (22%) Persons Under Investigation

October 17, 2020
428 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
337 (79 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
91 (21 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 16, 2020
434 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
352 (81 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
82 (19 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 15, 2020
420 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
329 (78 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
91 (22 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 14, 2020
405 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
317 (78 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
88 (22 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 13, 2020
385 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
290 (75 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
95 (25 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 12, 2020
370 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
288 (78 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
82 (22 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 11, 2020
383 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
284 (74 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
99 (26 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 10, 2020
365 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
265 (73 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
100 (27 percent) Persons Under Investigation

October 9, 2020
380 Total COVID Patients (Confirmed & Suspected/PUI)
268 (71 percent) Confirmed COVID-19
112 (29 percent) Persons Under Investigation

New Hospital Admissions by Admission Date

October 18, 2020
60 patients admitted to the hospital
59 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 17, 2020
25 patients admitted to the hospital
56 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 16, 2020
76 patients admitted to the hospital
56 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 15, 2020
79 patients admitted to the hospital
53 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 14, 2020
75 patients admitted to the hospital
48 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 13, 2020
55 patients admitted to the hospital
42 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 12, 2020
41 patients admitted to the hospital
43 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 11, 2020
43 patients admitted to the hospital
43 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 10, 2020
21 patients admitted to the hospital
42 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 9, 2020
54 patients admitted to the hospital
43 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

October 8, 2020
46 patients admitted to the hospital
42 seven-day average of patients admitted to the hospital

An important note: The 79 COVID-19 patients admitted to hospitals on October 15 was the largest number since 92 on May 2.

In short, Colorado's third wave continues to swell. 

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