The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's latest weekly update on COVID-19 outbreaks in the state includes 35 new entries, and over a quarter of them are linked to colleges, including four more Greek houses at the University of Colorado Boulder and a trio of sites at the University of Denver.
The CDPHE considers an entity an outbreak after two or more COVID-19 cases among residents, staffers or the like are confirmed within a fourteen-day period, or two or more cases of respiratory illness with an onset of symptoms within a fourteen-day period are paired with at least one additional COVID-19 diagnosis.
The September 16 update from the CDPHE lists 681 total outbreaks since the start of the pandemic: 150 active, 531 considered resolved. The 35 new sites reflect the highest weekly tally since May 20, when the department listed 43 new outbreaks during the biggest increase in testing since the rise of the novel coronavirus.
Four new outbreaks are at locations that had one in previous months, including three that experienced multiple tragedies: Alpine Living Center in Adams County, which suffered ten resident deaths following positive cases that surfaced in July; Denver North Care Center in Denver County, with eleven resident deaths resulting from a spread formally recognized in April; and Mesa Vista of Boulder, where five residents passed after a contagion discovered that same month.
Of the 35 new outbreaks, 33 are listed as active and two are resolved, including the intriguing "Colorado Rockies organization," an outbreak that involves five positive cases. A number of Rockies players, including Charlie Blackmon, had tested positive for the novel coronavirus back in June, but the CDPHE lists the most recent outbreak as having started on August 11.
Still, the college outbreaks are the week's most significant development given events over preceding days. After several weeks of decline or relative stability, COVID-19 positivity data began creeping upward over the weekend, and at a September 15 press conference, Governor Jared Polis and the CDPHE's Dr. Rachel Herlihy said the most worrisome increases were tied to post-secondary schools, particularly college freshmen and sophomores. Later that same day, CU Boulder administrators put the entire campus on quarantine for two weeks in an attempt to slow an official case count that had reached nearly 400 and was expected to keep growing.
The four newest Greek house outbreaks at CU Boulder are at Alpha Phi Sorority House, Delta Gamma Sorority House, Gamma Phi Beta and Phi Kappa Psi; they join Pi Beta Phi, which was identified the previous week. The DU items on the roster involve Diamond Residence Hall, the Ritchie Center and the university's gymnastics team. Also of concern are outbreaks at Regis University in Denver, and within a sports team at Colorado Mesa University in Grand Junction.
Other significant outbreaks include Westminster High School, child care centers in Lake and Weld counties, a Mesa County church, car dealerships in Pueblo and Boulder counties, a Summit County Target, a "social gathering" in Breckenridge, and multiple residential care facilities, led by one in Logan County with more than fifty positive or probable cases.
Here are this week's new outbreaks, complete with the date each was identified:
1. Advantage Treatment Center, Active, Correctional, Other, Logan, 9/10/2020, 42 positive resident cases, 12 positive staff cases
2. Alpine Living Center (020410): September 2020, Active, Healthcare — Skilled Nursing, Adams County, 9/9/2020, 3 positive resident cases
3. Bear Creek Senior Living (23054G), Active, Healthcare — Assisted Living, El Paso County, 9/11/2020, 7 positive resident cases, 2 probable resident cases, 2 resident deaths (not lab confirmed), 9 positive staff cases, 5 probable staff cases
4. The Center, Active, Child Care Center, Lake County, 9/10/2020, 2 positive staff cases, 1 probable staff case
5. CMU Sports Team, Active, College/University, Mesa County, 9/15/2020, 1 positive staff case, 11 positive attendee cases
6. Colorado Rockies Organization, Resolved 9/8/2020, Adult Sports Club/Team, Denver County, 8/11/2020, 5 positive staff cases
7. Dale Spradley Motors, Active, Other, Automobile Dealership, Pueblo County, 9/15/2020, 2 positive staff cases, 2 probable staff cases
8. Denver North Care Center (020444): September 2020, Active, Healthcare — Skilled Nursing, Denver County, 9/15/2020, 3 positive resident cases
9. Eco Tech Environmental Inc., Active, Non-Food Manufacturer/Warehouse, Adams County, 9/15/2020, 3 positive staff cases, 1 probable staff case
10. Fellowship Church, Active, Religious Facility, Mesa County, 8/31/2020, 3 positive attendee cases
11. Hawthorne Gardening Co., Active, Office/Indoor Workspace, Arapahoe County, 9/15/2020, 5 positive staff cases
12. Hydro Construction — Boyd Lake Filter Plant, Active, Construction Site, Larimer County, 9/2/2020, 2 positive staff cases
13.Independence House — Pecos: September 2020, Active, Correctional, Other, Denver County, 9/10/2020, 3 positive resident cases, 3 positive staff cases
14. Little Angels Christian Pre-K, Active, Child Care Center, Weld County, 9/14/2020, 2 positive staff cases, 1 positive attendee case
15. Manorcare Health Services 0- Denver (020476), Resolved 9/11/2020, Healthcare — Skilled Nursing, Denver County, 4/8/2020, 42 positive resident cases, 9 probable resident cases, 12 positive resident deaths, 2 resident deaths (not lab confirmed), 17 positive staff cases, 13 probable staff cases
16. Mesa Vista of Boulder (020380): September 2020, Active, Healthcare — Skilled Nursing, Boulder County, 9/11/2020, 2 positive resident cases, 5 positive staff cases
17. Molecular Coatings, Active, Construction Company/Contractor, Commercial painting company, Larimer County, 9/15/2020, 2 positive staff cases
18. Parker Core Knowledge Charter School, Active, School K-12, Douglas County, 9/10/2020, 1 probable staff case, 3 positive attendee cases, 2 probable attendee cases
19. Regis University, Active, College/University, Denver County, 9/9/2020, 32 positive attendee cases, 13 probable attendee cases
20. Social Gathering — Breckenridge, Active, Social Gathering, Summit County, 9/11/2020, 2 positive attendee cases
21. Steele Bros Heating, Active, Construction Company/Contractor, Douglas County, 9/15/2020, 2 positive staff cases
22. Target, Active, Retailer, Summit County, 9/15/2020, 3 positive staff cases
23. Trinidad Benham, Active, Food Manufacturing/Packaging, Logan County, 9/10/2020, 8 positive staff cases
24. University of Colorado Boulder — Alpha Phi Sorority House, Active, College/University, Boulder County, 9/14/2020, 6 positive attendee cases
25. University of Colorado Boulder — Delta Gamma Sorority House, Active, College/University, Boulder County, 9/9/2020, 19 positive attendee cases, 6 probable attendee cases
26. University of Colorado Boulder — Gamma Phi Beta, Active, College/University, Boulder County, 9/14/2020, 4 positive resident cases
27. University of Colorado Boulder — Phi Kappa Psi, Active, College/University, Boulder County, 9/13/2020, 8 positive resident cases, 8 positive attendee cases, 1 probable attendee case
28. University of Denver — Diamond Residence Hall, Active, College/University, Denver County, 9/15/2020, 3 positive resident cases
29. University of Denver — Gymnastics Team, Active, College/University, Denver County, 9/15/2020, 3 positive attendee cases
30. University of Denver — Ritchie Center, Active, College/University, Denver County, 9/15/2020, 1 positive staff case, 3 positive attendee cases
31. Valley Nissan, Active, Other, Car dealership, Boulder County, 9/8/2020, 9 positive staff cases, 4 probable staff cases
32, Vibra Hospital, Active, Healthcare — Rehab Facility, Rehab hospital, Adams County, 9/9/2020, 8 positive resident cases, 2 positive resident deaths, 18 positive staff cases
33. Way To Go Merchandising and Staffing — 5051, Active, Construction Company/Contractor, Remodeling Contract Company, Weld County, 9/14/2020, 3 positive staff cases
34. Westminster High School, Active, School, K-12, Adams County, 9/11/2020, 3 positive attendee cases
35. Young Life Trail West Lodge, Active, Overnight Camp, Chaffee County, 9/15/2020, 7 positive staff cases, 1 probable staff case
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