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Colorado coronavirus latest numbers, July 21

41,059 cases of COVID-19 have been reported in Colorado, up from 40,566 the day prior. The number of hospitalizations increased slightly.

COLORADO, USA — There are 41,059 known, cumulative cases of COVID-19 in Colorado, and 1,763 deaths among those who tested positive for COVID-19, according to the latest data from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).

Data is released each day at 4 p.m. Numbers will be updated each day at that time.

A breakdown of this data and links to related stories can be found below.

> Video above: By the numbers: COVID cases in Colorado going up.

What to know right now

  • 41,059 cases, up from 40,566 day prior.
  • 6,110 hospitalized, up from 6,057 the day prior.
  • 1,763 deaths among those who tested positive for COVID-19, up from 1,758 the day prior.
  • 1,643 deaths due to COVID-19, up from 1,615 the day prior.
  • Get the latest data from CDPHE.
  • Polis issued an executive order mandating face masks or coverings for anyone in indoor places in public. The order went into affect July 17. 
  • Polis ordered bars and nightclubs closed again to in-person service after two weeks of slight upticks in cases.

Updates from July 20 can be found here.

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Coronavirus data breakdown

In Colorado as of July 20, CDPHE reports 41,059 people have tested positive for the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. That's up from 40,566 the day prior.

The 7-day average of new cases is 450 as of July 17. The trend has been fluctuating since July 6.

The graphic below shows case growth, which comes from subtracting the total number of cases from the previous day. A moving average helps capture a trend over a period of time. This removes some noise from the day-to-day numbers. The line on the graph is the seven-day moving average of case growth.

Positivity is the number of tests that come back with a COVID-19 result. Above 10% could be an indicator that not enough testing is being done and that only people likely to have COVID are getting tested. The World Health Organization recommended in May 2020 that the positivity rate should be even lower, at 5%, to contain the virus.

The positivity rate for July 16 was 5.59% and the seven-day moving average was 4.39%. A week ago, July 9, it was 3.98%, and two weeks ago, July 2, it was ­­­­­3.36%. This could be an indicator of increased viral activity in the state.


CDPHE reports:

  • 1,763 deaths among people with COVID-19
  • 1,643 deaths due to COVID-19

The majority of deaths — 53% — are among people over age 80; 24% of deaths occurred in people between ages 70-79, and 13% were in people ages 60-69.

The graph below shows the total number of people in Colorado who have died after a COVID-19 diagnosis, since the first death happened on March 13.

On May 15, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment shifted to a death documentation difference that divided into "deaths among cases" and "deaths due to COVID-19." Dr. Rachel Herlihy, state epidemiologist at CDPHE, said on May 18 that deaths in the "among" category are from those that tested positive for COVID-19 either before or after death. This is done by medical workers on the front line. Deaths in the "due to" category lag and stem from death certificates that the Centers for Disease Control codes and then sends to CDPHE. On the CDPHE website, it explains the two categories should not be on the same timeline because of reporting differences. 


Of those who tested positive for the disease, a total of 6,110 hospitalizations have been reported.

As of 10:49 a.m. on July 21, 248 patients were hospitalized with the disease, according to the most recent data from the Colorado Hospital Association. Within the last 24 hours, 50 patients had been transferred or discharged.

Note: 90% of facilities reported data on July 21.   

The graph below shows the number of people currently hospitalized with a COVID-19 diagnosis and the number of people who have been discharged within 24 hours. This is a key metric because it can be an indicator of whether or not Colorado’s hospital system is being overwhelmed by the virus.

The seven-day moving average for confirmed hospitalizations is 273. A week ago, July 10, the seven-day was 180.14, and two weeks ago, July 3, it was 138.57.


According to CDPHE, 454,290 people have been tested, up from 448,204 the day prior, and 63 counties are reporting cases, two more counties than the day before.

The state processed 8,910 tests for July 16, and the seven-day moving average was 8,828.71. A week ago, July 9, it was 7,732 and two weeks ago, July 2, it was ­­­­­7,301.29.

There may be a lull or spike in reported case data due to how it's reported. CDPHE data changes as labs, hospitals, facilities and local agencies report their own data. For example, a spike in the number of deaths does not necessarily mean that many more people died within 24 hours, but rather is indicative of when the data is entered into the system. New data is released daily at 4 p.m.

In addition, CDPHE on May 15 changed the way it was reporting data in two ways:

  • The number of deaths among people with COVID-19. This represents the total number of deaths reported among people who have COVID-19, but COVID-19 may not have been the cause of death listed on the death certificate. This information is required by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and is crucial for public health surveillance, as it provides more information about disease transmission and can help identify risk factors among all deaths across populations.
  • The number of deaths among people who died from COVID-19: This represents the total number of people whose death was attributed to COVID-19 as indicated on a death certificate. This number is determined by the CDC and is updated daily for dates through the previous Saturday.

> See the latest numbers from the state health department.

COVID-19 is a disease caused by a virus that first appeared in Wuhan, China, in late 2019. Symptoms of COVID-19 can include fever, cough and breathing trouble. Most patients develop only mild symptoms. But some people, usually those with other medical complications, develop more severe symptoms, including pneumonia, which can be fatal.