Long-term and residential care facilities

Last updated July 14, 2022.








Public health order

Public health and executive orders page for Public Health order 20-20 and others.
This order requires all Colorado licensed or certified skilled nursing facilities, intermediate care facilities, and assisted living residences to take a number of steps to help prevent and control outbreaks. Please read the public health order carefully. It requires:

  • Facilities should allow for indoor and outdoor visitation at all times and for all residents, regardless of vaccination status, except in certain circumstances as outlined in the residential care facility comprehensive mitigation guidance (page 48). Visitation during an outbreak may be allowed with certain criteria met. Compassionate care visits must be allowed under all circumstances.
  • An at-the-door symptom check for all employees, vendors, and visitors before entering the facility. 
  • At least weekly surveillance testing must be conducted. Visitors may be offered rapid antigen tests upon arrival to the facility; however, proof of a negative test or vaccination status must NOT be a contingency for visitation. Any visitors who test positive at the door must be denied entrance.
  • All facilities to submit a COVID-19 Prevention and Response Plan to CDPHE. 
  • People who have COVID-19 symptoms or positive tests to be isolated.
  • Ensuring all residents have access to necessary medical care.
  • Facility residents and employees to wear a mask or other face-covering when in public. Employees must wear an appropriate mask at all times when in the facility.

Guidance for residential care facilities

CDPHE guidance and resources:

Setting specific guidance
Required testing practices
COVID-19 vaccination

CDPHE Forms and Checklists

COVID-19 screening forms
Outbreak forms

CDC guidance

CMS guidance 

    Residential care strike team

    In order to reduce the spread of illness and the number of deaths in residential care settings, the state launched a Residential Care Strike Team in late April 2020. The Residential Care Strike Team is composed of representatives of the Governor’s office and state agencies that play a role in regulating and supporting residential care facilities: The Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), Human Services (DHS), Health Care Policy and Financing (HCPF), Department of Public Safety and Regulatory Agencies (DORA). The goal of the Residential Care Strike Team is to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in all high-density environments serving older adults and people with disabilities.

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