Colorado COVID hospitalizations rise nearly 40% amid latest wave

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Data: N.Y. Times; Note: Case counts may be affected by Memorial Day disruptions to reporting; Cartogram: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

Colorado’s COVID wave appears to be outpacing the majority of the country and is leading to more hospitalizations across the state.

By the numbers: The number of patients hospitalized for COVID-19 spiked nearly 40% this week compared to a week earlier, with 225 people admitted as of Tuesday, the latest state data shows.

  • In the same time period, Colorado’s positivity rate based on PCR test results rose to 12% — 7 percentage points above the key benchmark that sounds the alarm for public health officials.
  • Three counties — Boulder, Broomfield and Jackson — have moved to the CDC’s highest-risk level, and masking is recommended indoors in those areas. Denver remains at medium-risk.

What they’re saying: “It’s fair to assume the virus is fairly widespread,” Beth Carlton at the Colorado School of Public Health told the Denver Post. “Whatever hope of a plateau there was last week is gone for now.”

What to watch: Research suggests new Omicron variants expected to emerge in the future may keep case levels high — and even potentially outrun the vaccines designed to fight them, Axios’ Tina Reed reports.

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