Colorado public health officials have revealed they know of at least five “outbreaks” of the new coronavirus inside residential and other non-hospital health care facilities in the state and have notified people who may have been exposed.
But for two days officials have declined to give details, such as how many people may have been exposed or where the facilities are located, despite rising concerns about clusters that can accelerate person-to-person spread of the virus.
These facilities in Colorado rank among at least 146 nursing homes nationwide where federal authorities on Monday said coronavirus cases are confirmed. Roughly 15,000 nursing homes around the nation house 1.3 million people.
It was at one of these facilities, in the Seattle suburb of Kirkland, where an outbreak of the virus led to conditions that federal authorities were calling a ground zero for the spread of the coronavirus in the United States. At least 35 deaths now have been linked to the Life Care Center nursing facility in Kirkland. Federal inspectors have been looking into what happened.
In Colorado, state health officials “are not publicly identifying the facilities at this time because the investigations are ongoing,” Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment spokesman Ian Dickson said. “… We have notified all who may have been exposed and will continue to provide information as it is necessary to protect public health and slow and limit the spread of COVID-19.”