The novel coronavirus that causes COVID-19. (National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, Rocky Mountain Labs)
Colorado saw a slight uptick this week in the number of people hospitalized for COVID-19, according to data from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment — though hospitalizations remain far below April levels.
As of July 14, 252 people across the state were hospitalized for COVID-19 treatment. That’s a 45% increase from one week before.
Hospitalizations peaked April 14 with 888 COVID-19 patients, according to CDPHE data.
“We will defeat the virus in Colorado, but we are continually coming up a bit short,” Gov. Jared Polis, a Democrat, said at a July 14 news conference. “Now, it’s not the time to panic. It’s not the time to feel anxious. It’s the time to redouble our justified caution and to make sure that we take the steps that are in our power to control this pandemic in Colorado, save lives, save our economy.”
That includes maintaining 6 feet of distance from others and wearing a mask, Polis stressed.
Despite rising hospitalizations, Polis has so far declined to implement a statewide mask mandate, but many local jurisdictions have approved their own.
So far, those include Adams, Araphahoe, Boulder, Clear Creek, Denver, Gunnison, Jefferson, Larimer, Lake, Ouray, Pitkin, Routt, San Juan and Summit counties; and the cities of Aspen, Durango, Englewood, Erie, Fraser, Glenwood Springs, Lone Tree, Loveland, Superior, Wheat Ridge and Winter Park, according to a report from 9News.
El Paso County, the state’s second-largest by population, does not have an order in place.
Polis said July 14 that he was “trying to get data” on whether mask mandates in certain areas of the state have actually increased the number of people wearing them. If true, he said, that would “help sway me towards particular policy” on a statewide order.
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