More than 428,000 people in Colorado have tested positive for COVID-19 and 23,476 have been hospitalized as of Sunday afternoon, according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
READ MORE: List of Colorado businesses that are open
Click here for the latest update on the number of cases, the age, gender and location of presumptive positive, indeterminate and confirmed cases from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.
Below, we're updating this blog with the latest information regarding COVID-19 in Colorado.
Sunday, March 7
4 p.m. | Latest COVID-19 data
Here are the latest coronavirus numbers for Colorado, as of 4 p.m. Sunday, with the change from Saturday in parentheses:
436,602 cases (+840)
23,904 hospitalized (+18)
2,616,541 people tested (+6,107)
6,415,123 test encounters (+38,163)
5,989 deaths among cases (+3)
5,995 deaths due to COVID-19 (+0)
3,977 outbreaks (+0)
Colorado's seven-day average positivity rate for COVID-19 was 3.33% on Saturday. The state's goal is to remain below 5%.
As of Sunday, 1,041,248 Coloradans had received at least one dose of the vaccine, and 599,745 people have been fully immunized. Colorado began administering the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine this week.
Saturday, March 6
4 p.m. | Latest COVID-19 data
Here are the latest coronavirus numbers for Colorado, as of 4 p.m. Saturday, with the change from Friday in parentheses:
435,762 cases (+1,108)
23,886 hospitalized (+23)
64 counties (+0)
2,610,434 people tested (+6,427)
6,376,960 test encounters (+33,600)
5,986 deaths among cases (+0)
5,995 deaths due to COVID-19 (+0)
3,977 outbreaks (+6)
Colorado's seven-day average positivity rate for COVID-19 was 3.35% on Friday. The state's goal is to remain below 5%.
As of Saturday, 1,016,496 Coloradans had received at least one dose of the vaccine, and 564,473 people have been fully immunized. Colorado began administering the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine this week.
Friday, March 5
11 p.m. | Grand County to drop to Level Yellow Monday
After seeing a steady decline in COVID-19 cases since Feb. 18, Grand County announced they are moving to Level Yellow on the state's COVID-19 dial.
This is the first time the county has been below Level Red since October 2020, but numbers have also gone below Level Orange metrics. They've been at Level Yellow for cases and positivity for seven days.
To give businesses time to prepare for accommodating additional capacities safely, the amended order will go into effect by 12:01 a.m. March 8.
Colorado marked the anniversary of its first confirmed COVID-19 case with an “evening of remembrance” Friday to honor the nearly 6,000 people who have died of the virus over the past year.
Performing artist Mary Louise Lee and members of the Colorado Symphony performed “Amazing Grace” to honor the Coloradans lost to COVID-19.
4 p.m. | Latest COVID-19 data
Here are the latest coronavirus numbers for Colorado, as of 4 p.m. Friday, with the change from Thursday in parentheses:
434,654 cases (+1,633)
23,863 hospitalized (+72)
64 counties (+0)
2,604,007 people tested (+6,312)
6,343,360 test encounters (+33,127)
5,986 deaths among cases (+12)
5,995 deaths due to COVID-19 (+35)
3,971 outbreaks (+10)
Colorado's seven-day average positivity rate for COVID-19 was 3.39% on Friday. The state's goal is to remain below 5%.
As of Friday, 990,508 Coloradans had received at least one dose of the vaccine, and 543,727 people have been fully immunized. Colorado began administering the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine this week.
2:30 p.m. | Polis extends Colorado's mask mandate
Gov. Jared Polis on Friday extended Colorado's mask mandate for another 30 days.
The move was no surprise but it happened just days after Texas Gov. Greg Abbott controversially lifted the mask mandate in his state. Polis last week suggested that a mandate extension in Colorado was going to happen. Polis and other state officials have strongly urged Coloradans to continue adhering to COVID-19 protocols, including wearing a mask indoors and staying socially distant, when possible.
2 p.m. | JBS meatpacking plant workers being vaccinated
Gov. Jared Polis spoke alongside JBS plant workers Friday afternoon as thousands of workers there are getting vaccinated today and tomorrow against COVID-19. The meatpacking plant saw among the largest COVID-19 outbreaks in the state last summer and saw six people die.
The governor also made an appearance at the Cargill plant in Fort Morgan earlier in the day as the state starts rolling out vaccine to plant and farm workers starting Friday in the new phase.
Colorado will mark the anniversary of its first confirmed COVID-19 case with an “evening of remembrance” Friday and a ceremony at the state Capitol.
The state says the event will be held to honor the nearly 6,000 Coloradans who have died of COVID-19 since last March. At 4:30 p.m., a World War II-era airplane with perform a flyover over Denver to kick off the ceremony.
At 6 p.m., buildings across the state are being asked to turn their lights to magenta, a color which represents compassion and kindness. Some police and fire departments might turn on their lights for a minute-long remembrance as well, the governor’s office said.
Cities and counties across the state will be participating in the event, as will be the Broncos and Rockies.
At 6:30 p.m., the remembrance ceremony is scheduled to begin, which will feature music, prayers, a song, and a speech from Gov. Jared Polis. Denver7 plans to carry that event live on air, on our website and social media channels, and on all of our streaming platforms.
Thursday, March 4
10:25 p.m. | CDPHE releases allocation criteria for state vaccine distribution
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) publicly released the allocation criteria for vaccine distribution across the state.
As enrolled COVID vaccine providers and vaccine supplies have increased, Colorado is transitioning to a standard allocation that includes the following factors:
- The percentage of weekly allocation at the health system/provider and local public health agency (LPHA) level.
- Average weekly throughput at the health system/provider and local public health agency level.
- Provider-identified maximum weekly throughput.
- Percentage of county population.
- Number and size of planned community vaccination sites.
CDPHE said the process ensures doses are distributed equitably throughout the state to move counties through the vaccination prioritization phases as quickly as possible. They generally divide the 15% of the allocation to equity clinics and 85% to enrolled providers, which includes: hospitals, health systems and pharmacies at 60%, local public health agencies at 20% and safety net clinic at 20%.
The Vaccine task Force is in close contact with counties that have received 1-2% fewer doses than their portion of the state's population to work to rectify these gaps and help them scale up to get more vaccines administered in their counties.
The allocation criteria does not include doses allocated directly from the federal government to pharmacies, Federally Qualified Health Centers or some federal agencies with staff in Colorado.
4 p.m. | Latest COVID-19 numbers
Here are the latest coronavirus numbers for Colorado, as of 4 p.m. Thursday, with the change from Wednesday in parentheses:
433,021 cases (+1,351)
23,791 hospitalized (+56)
64 counties (+0)
2,597,695 tested (+6,832)
6,310,233 test encounters (+36,564)
5,974 deaths among cases (+4)
5,960 deaths due to COVID-19 (+6)
3,961 outbreaks (+12)
The latest hospital data showed 355 beds in use by confirmed or suspected COVID-19 patients, 34 fewer than Wednesday. Colorado's seven-day positivity rate was 3.33%. The state's goal is to remain below 5%.
As of Thursday, 965,945 people had received at least one dose of the vaccine in Colorado, and 521,567 people had received two doses.
12:15 p.m. | CDPHE update on COVID-19
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment gave an update on COVID-19 on Thursday as we close in on one year since Colorado's first case of the virus. Officials looked back on the last year and how Colorado's COVID-19 data compared to the rest of the U.S.
Watch the full update here:
Colorado is launching a statewide task force to try to identify the people responsible for more than 1 million fraudulent unemployment claims that have been filed statewide since the start of last year.
Colorado Attorney General Phil Weiser made the announcement Thursday morning along with officials from the Colorado Department of Labor and Employment and 1st Judicial District Attorney Alexis King.
“This unprecedented amount of fraud and theft requires a coordinated and comprehensive statewide response, so that wrongdoers can be identified and held accountable,” Weiser said in a statement.
The so-called Colorado Unemployment Fraud Task Force will be comprised of investigators from the attorney general’s office, CDLE, Colorado Bureau of Investigation and several district attorneys’ offices across Colorado and will work with federal agencies and prosecutors as needed, Weiser said.
CDLE Executive Director said the latest fraud data with respect to unemployment insurance in Colorado showed more than 1.1 million fraudulent claims had been filed since the beginning of last year, including around 800,000 in 2020 alone.
He said that amounted to more fraudulent claims being flagged than legitimate claims that had been paid out. In total, the state estimates it prevented about $7.5 billion in fraudulent payments from being sent out.
The CDLE says that it has paid out about $6.5 million in fraudulent claims but has been able to recoup about $1 million of that money thus far.
Fraud has plagued the unemployment systems for Colorado and most other states since last year, hitting the Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) program for gig workers and self-employed workers first starting last summer and then moving into the state’s regular unemployment system in December before the two were combined when Colorado upgraded to MyUI+ in January and implemented a host of new fraud triggers and an identity verification system.
Colorado has not made any arrests or prosecuted anyone thus far for unemployment insurance fraud that could be announced as of Thursday, Weiser said. He said that the task force’s priority would be looking for people to bring to justice.
Barela said the CDLE was adding members to its criminal investigative team who will work in partnership with the CBI to investigate potential fraudsters or identity thieves, then work with the consumer protection and criminal investigation teams at the AG’s office and team of district attorneys to prosecute the cases.
King, 3rd Judicial District Attorney Henry Solano and 9th Judicial District Attorney Jeff Cheney are the district attorney representatives on the task force. Any statewide cases that involve several jurisdictions would be prosecuted by the AG’s Office’s special prosecutions unit in concert with the local district attorney, and the statewide grand jury could also be used.
Should any cases in Colorado involve cross-state or international fraud rings, the task force would work with the U.S. Attorney’s Office for Colorado to prosecute.
Click here to read the full story.
7:40 a.m. | Latest Colorado unemployment data
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment reported that an estimated 13,034 regular initial unemployment claims were filed during the week ending on Feb. 27.
Since mid-March 2020, an estimated total of 846,016 regular initial unemployment claims have been filed. There were also 9,916 Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) initial claims filed for the week ending Feb. 27. PUA initial claim figures for last week include new and reopened claims tied to the Phase 2 rollout.
For the week ending on Feb. 20, a combined total of 282,986 continued claims were filed from the regular UI (75,165), PUA (92,835), and Pandemic Emergency Unemployment Compensation (PEUC) (114,986) programs.
The spike in PUA and PEUC continued claims compared to the week prior coincides with the Feb. 20 Phase 2 rollout and the potential of those claimants requesting weekly payments as far back as the week beginning Dec. 27, the CDLE said. CDLE estimates those continued claims were filed by approximately 190,921 individuals (68,239 for regular UI; 47,789 for PUA, and 74,893 for PEUC).
Wednesday, March 3
6:24 p.m. | Denver receives first doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine
The City of Denver announced on Twitter Wednesday that it has just received its first doses of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine and are preparing to administer them. They have not said how much of the vaccine they received. However, the state is expected to receive over 100,000 doses of the recently-approved vaccine by April 11.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration issued emergency use authorization for the Johnson & Johnson vaccine on Feb. 27. The one-shot vaccine is 86% percent effective against the most severe form of COVID-19.
4:29 p.m. | Latest COVID-19 data
Here are the latest COVID-19 numbers for Colorado, as of 4 p.m. Wednesday, with the change from Tuesday in parentheses:
431,670 cases (+1,055)
23,735 hospitalize (+142)
64 counties (+0)
2,590,863 people tested (+5,473)
6,273,669 test encounters (+29,808)
5,970 deaths among cases (+11)
5,954 deaths due to COVID-19 (+27)
3,949 outbreaks (+30)
The latest hospital data showed 389 beds in use by confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients – 6 fewer than Tuesday. Colorado’s seven-day average positivity rate was 3.37% on Tuesday. The state’s goal is to remain below 5%.
As of Tuesday, 947,185 Coloradans had received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 509,021 had received both doses of either Pfizer or Moderna.
Tuesday, March 2
4:23 p.m. | Another Colorado vaccine finder tool
Another tool has been developed to try to help people find open vaccine appointments in Colorado. While several other similar websites and social media accounts have been created, this is yet another tool for people hoping to find vaccine appointments near them.
Go to VaccineSpotter.org for more information on how to use the tool.
4:19 p.m. | Latest Colorado COVID-19 data
Here are the latest COVID-19 data for Colorado as of 4 p.m. Tuesday, with the change from Monday in parenthesis:
430,615 cases (+776)
23,593 hospitalized (+43)
64 counties (+0)
2,585,390 people tested (+3,669)
6,243,861 test encounters (+14,006)
5,959 deaths among cases (+7)
5,927 deaths due to COVID-19 (+24)
3,919 outbreaks (+26)
The latest hospital data showed 395 beds in use by confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients – 32 fewer than Monday. Colorado’s seven-day average positivity rate was 3.36% on Monday. The state’s goal is to remain below 5%.
As of Monday, 930,911 Coloradans had received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 495,961 had received both doses of either Pfizer or Moderna.
10:10 a.m. | CDLE hosting two unemployment town halls on Wednesday
The Colorado Department of Labor and Employment announced it is holding two unemployment town halls Wednesday to provide updates and information on the state’s insurance program. The town halls will cover upgrades to the unemployment system MyUI+, frequently asked questions and more.
An English version is set for 1 p.m. A Spanish version is set for 3 p.m.
You can register at ColoradoUI.gov to receive instructions today on how to log in tomorrow. You can also visit the website Wednesday to join via phone or computer. Registration is not required.
Monday, March 1
The Colorado Department of Health and Environment (CDPHE) said the state is expecting the first allotment of Johnson and Johnson's COVID-19 vaccine by Friday, March 5.
The FDA just granted Emergency Use Authorization for the vaccine from Janssen Pharmaceuticals, which is owned by Johnson & Johnson, over the weekend.
CDPHE said they’re expecting 45,500 doses of Janssen vaccines by Friday, but they treat all orders as estimates until they arrive. The vaccine will be eligible to Coloradans as soon as Friday at a number of community vaccination sites across the state.
The Janssen vaccine requires only one dose, unlike the two-dose Moderna and Pfizer vaccines.
It uses a delivery system different from the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines to train the immune system to fight COVID-19, according to CDPHE.
Dr. Ross Kedl, a professor of immunology and microbiology at the University of Colorado Anschutz School of Medicine, said the Janssen vaccine uses viral vector technology, meaning the vaccine is made from an inactivated adenovirus that will be able "infect" the cells but not replicate itself.
11:30 p.m. | Eagle County offering vaccine pre-registration for additional groups
Eagle County Public Health and Environment (ECPHE) is offering pre-registration for phase 1B.3, which will be eligible to receive the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine March 5.
Vaccine supply is limited, so if the number of sign-ups exceeds the amount of doses, appointments will be issued on a random drawing for those who are eligible.
No further action is required once registered. Those selected to receive a vaccination appointment will be contacted by text message or email to schedule.
6:03 p.m. | Colorado reporting second infection data
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment began reporting data related to those who get a second infection of the COVID-19 virus. CDPHE reported 822 cases on Monday, which have report dates of Aug. 20, 2020, through Feb. 28, 2021, and represent 0.19% of Colorado’s total case count.
While reinfection is rare, it’s not unexpected based on what we know from similar viruses, CDPHE said in a release. The agency said it's important to note that the criteria used to define a new case or reinfection may change as we learn more about how long immunity lasts.
4:17 p.m. | Latest COVID-19 data
Here are the latest COVID-19 numbers for Colorado, as of 4 p.m. Monday, with the change from Sunday in parentheses:
429,839 cases (+1,536)
23,550 hospitalized (+74)
64 counties (+0)
2,581,721 people tested (+4,366)
6,229,855 test encounters (+13,654)
5,952 deaths among cases (+1)
5,903 deaths due to COVID-19 (+29)
3,893 outbreaks (+6)
The latest hospital data showed 427 beds in use by confirmed and suspected COVID-19 patients, 23 more than Sunday. Colorado's seven-day positivity rate was 3.40% on Sunday. The state's goal is to remain below 5%.
As of Sunday, 913,102 Coloradans had received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, and 482,442 people had received two doses.
3:50 p.m. | CDPHE gives update on long-term care facility vaccinations
State officials on Monday reported a "dramatic decrease" in COVID-19 cases at long-term care facilities, where 88% of residents have been vaccinated and 66% of staffers have been vaccinated. All long-term care facilities in the state have received the vaccine, according to state officials.
“An absolutely dramatic decrease in cases at long term care facilities” has been occurring since vaccinations began," CDPHE incident commander Scott Bookman said at a news conference Monday.
1:45 p.m. | Polis calls for Congressional delegation to extend critical benefits
Gov. Jared Polis on Monday called on Colorado's U.S. congressional delegation to work to make sure federal benefit programs are extended before they expire this month.
Assistance programs that help more than 100,000 Coloradans are set to expire March 14.
“While Colorado is appreciative for the immediate aid provided by the Consolidated Appropriations Act in December, the continued uncertainty regarding the extension and funding of federal unemployment programs for Coloradans makes it difficult to plan for basic needs and unexpected costs,” Polis wrote in a letter. "As you know, more than 18 million Americans are now collecting unemployment benefits, including $300 weekly supplemental payments that began in January. In just a few weeks, these crucial supplemental federal benefits will expire. Among one of the provisions in the American Rescue Plan is an increase in the supplemental weekly jobless benefits until August 29th, 2021. It is imperative that we avoid an interruption in these benefits and pass an extension that lines up with the programs from the Consolidated Appropriations Act to ensure programming can continue as seamlessly as possible."
Click here for the COVID-19 live blog for Feb. 22-Feb. 28, 2021.