Coronavirus In Colorado: March 14 Updates

The state health department on Saturday announced 24 more presumptive positive cases of COVID-19, bringing the total in Colorado to 101. 

Most are in Denver County, followed by Eagle, Pitkin and Arapahoe counties, and the total includes out of state visitors and the counties in which the individuals are staying. 

El Paso County has three cases while Pueblo County has one.

Cases are considered presumptive positive until the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can confirm the results. More than 800 people in Colorado have been checked since testing began at the end of February.

The update comes after Colorado saw its first death Friday as a result of the new coronavirus, an El Paso County woman in her 80s with underlying health conditions. 

"This is the first [death]," said Governor Jared Polis Friday afternoon. "There will be more. There will be far more Coloradans who recover successfully and go on with their lives from this virus."

According to the state, the woman lived independently, but health officials in El Paso County say anyone who visited the Colorado Springs Bridge Center from late February through early March and is experiencing symptoms of the virus should call their health provider. The woman who died attended games there between Feb. 27 and March 3.

They say the notice is especially important for people who attended the following games:

  • 02/27/2020 - Thursday Evening, Unit Pairs
  • 02/28/2020 - Friday Morning, Pairs
  • 02/29/2020 – 299er Pair
  • 02/29/2020 – 299er Pairs
  • 03/01/2020 – 299er Swiss
  • 03/03/2020 – 499'rs

"Many attendees were older people who might be especially vulnerable to severe illness from COVID-19," said Kimberly Pattison of El Paso County Public Health in a release.

Symptoms include fever, shortness of breath, and difficulty breathing. The most at risk of developing a severe illness are older people with chronic medical conditions, though people older than 60 and those with chronic conditions also have a higher risk.

El Paso County officials on Saturday issued a local disaster emergency declaration, aimed at allowing the county to leverage more resources to help fight the spread of the virus.

"The safety and well-being of our citizens in our top priority," said Mark Waller, chair of the El Paso County Board of Commissioners, said in a statement. Waller said the declaration helps provide access to additional medical resources. "Until further notice, people should go about their normal lives with a few modifications to help limit the spread of the disease."

The state has issued visitation restrictions for nursing, assisted living and intermediate care centers to help limit the spread of the virus to those at most risk.  

On Friday, the U.S. Department of Defense issued new restrictions on domestic travel. The ban applies to all servicemembers and Department of Defense civilians and their families, and with a few exceptions, is in effect March 16 through May 11, 2020. 

Colorado saw its first two presumptive positive cases of COVID-19 on March 5. On March 10, Gov. Polis declared a state of emergency to help combat the growing threat. At that time, colleges and universities began moving to distance learning and many local school districts followed suit with their own breaks to help prevent the spread of the virus.

Health officials continue to stress the importance of good hygiene, including frequent hand washing, wiping down surfaces, and covering coughs and sneezes.

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