Approximately 1 in 99 people in Colorado are infectious; 70% of Coloradans estimated to be immune

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Increases in COVID-19 infections & hospitalizations over last few months put Colorado in a fifth wave -– but infections are slowing

Denver, (Sept. 17, 2021): Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) and the Colorado School of Public Health released an updated statewide modeling report showing Colorado is currently in its fifth wave of infections. The estimated effective reproductive number in Colorado is 1.1, indicating increasing infections, but that value is lower than it has been over the last month. One in 99 Coloradans are estimated to be currently infected—and 70% of Coloradans are estimated to be immune, by vaccination or by prior infection.

The school of public health runs multiple scenarios, taking into consideration transmission control and vaccinations. Under the scenarios modeled, the number of hospitalized patients could come close to the December 2020 peak but this extreme is unlikely. Hospital demand in the weeks ahead depends on the level of transmission control and vaccination rates. An increase in the rate of vaccination from recent mandates and federal actions will be particularly beneficial. 

“The state data and the modeling indicates we are not quite out of the woods yet,” said Dr. Rachel Herlihy, state epidemiologist. “In the short-term, transmission control measures, like masking and social distancing, will continue to reduce peak hospital demand. Longer term, an increase in vaccination rates will continue to be crucial to reducing hospital demand and saving lives.”

The latest modeling projections are based on COVID-19 hospital census data through September 13, and vaccination data through September 12, 2021.

The Colorado School of Public Health (ColoradoSPH) assembled the expert group that works with the state on modeling projections. The group includes modeling scientists at the ColoradoSPH and the University of Colorado School of Medicine at the CU Anschutz Medical Campus, as well as experts from the University of Colorado Boulder, University of Colorado Denver, and Colorado State

Continue to stay up to date by visiting covid19.colorado.gov.

 

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