(CBS4) – The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment reported 1,430 confirmed cases of coronavirus in the state Thursday afternoon. So far, 10,122 people have been tested for the virus in Colorado and 24 people have died.
Gov. Jared Polis announced a statewide order Wednesday, requiring Coloradans to stay at home, except for limited activities and essential business. The order is intended to slow the spread of coronavirus by limiting exposure.
Based on global rates of hospitalization and death, CDPHE predicts that without measures like the stay-home order, Colorado hospitals will be unable to handle the surge of patients. Officials say even with these extreme measures, hospitals likely will reach their maximum capacity to care for people with severe symptoms.
“The sacrifices that Coloradans are making will pay off in the long run,” said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, executive director, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. “It will take everyone acting together to slow the spread of the illness to a level that our health care systems can absorb, but countless lives will be saved through these measures.”
The stay-at-home order went into effect on Thursday and ends on April 11. In addition, Polis signed an executive order extending the expiration date for certain licenses and other documents to limit in-person renewals. This includes state park passes, licenses for health care facilities, Medicaid and CHIP providers, commercial drivers and more. You can read the full executive order here.
“We will continue taking the bold steps necessary to limit the spread of this virus including those to increase convenience for Coloradans staying at home,” said Polis. “These news actions will ensure Coloradans can have their licenses renewed without having to go in person. We also took actions to protect our prison guards and facilities today. For now, people need to stay at home whenever possible to save lives.”
Gov. Polis’ executive order will allow jails and prisons greater flexibility in managing the prison population during the coronavirus outbreak. In accordance with the order, the Colorado Department of Corrections implemented a temporary moratorium on receiving new intakes from county jails.
“This Executive Order from the Governor allows us to pursue potential options to manage our prison population without jeopardizing safety during this crisis,” said Colorado Department of Corrections Executive Director Dean Williams. “We will be working diligently over the coming days and weeks to put into action the directives from the order in a thoughtful and measured way.”
CDOC was notified Thursday that a staff member tested positive for coronavirus. The staff member, who is a parole officer from the Sterling region, did not work inside a prison. At this time there have not been any inmates that have tested positive for coronavirus.
Across the state, the greatest number of confirmed cases is in Denver County, where 262 people have tested positive for coronavirus. Eagle, El Paso, Jefferson, Arapahoe and Weld Counties have each reported more than 100 confirmed cases of the virus.
Health officials believe the actual number of cases is much higher in the state, but the figures are unavailable due to lack of available tests.
Of the 24 deaths reported, 11 people were over the age of 80. No deaths have been reported in Colorado among people under the age of 40.
CDPHE will update the state’s coronavirus data each day at 4 p.m. at covid19.colorado.gov.