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Colorado coronavirus latest case, vaccine numbers for March 16

There are currently 341 people hospitalized with COVID-19, and the state's seven-day moving average positivity rate is 3.42%.

COLORADO, USA — There are 341 patients currently hospitalized with COVID-19 in Colorado as of March 15, and the seven-day, moving average positivity rate decreased to 3.42%, according to the latest data from the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE).

Additionally, 1,229,623 people have been vaccinated with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as of March 16, and 754,123 of them have been fully vaccinated. Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines are about 95% effective and require two doses to achieve immunization. Johnson & Johnson's vaccine was granted emergency use authorization on Feb. 27. It is 86% effective at preventing severe disease and requires one dose.

> Video above: Vaccine concern and Europe's 3rd wave

Positivity is an important indicator of the status of COVID-19 in the state. The World Health Organization (WHO) in May 2020 recommended that the positivity rate be at or below 5% to contain the virus.

Current hospitalization data are also a key metric because they can be an indicator of whether Colorado’s hospital system is being overwhelmed by the virus. In April, hospitalizations peaked at 888 in one day. That number was surpassed Nov. 5, when the number increased to 894, and it climbed through Dec. 2 when hospitalizations peaked just below 2,000. Since then, the number has trended downward.

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

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

What to know right now:

  • 1,229,623 people vaccinated with at least one dose of vaccine.
  • 754,123 people fully vaccinated.  
  • 444,712 cumulative cases, up from 444,390 the day prior.           
  • 24,250 cumulative hospitalizations, up from 24,233 the day prior. 
  • 6,048 deaths among those who tested positive for COVID-19, up from 6,040 the day prior.
  • 6,126 deaths due to COVID-19, up from 6,115 the day prior.
  • Get the latest on data from CDPHE here.
  • More information on vaccines from CDPHE can be found here.
  • Gov. Jared Polis issued an executive order mandating face masks or coverings for anyone in indoor places in public.

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Coronavirus data breakdown

CDPHE reports 444,712 people have tested positive for the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. That's up from 444,390 the day prior.  

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.

Vaccination data breakdown

  • Colorado is currently in Phases 1A and 1B.
  • 1,229,623 people have been vaccinated with at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.  
  • 754,123 people have been fully vaccinated.
  • 1,089 total vaccine providers.

Colorado received its first shipment of the COVID-19 vaccine on Dec. 14. The U.S. Food & Drug Administration in December authorized emergency use for both the Pfizer vaccine and the Moderna vaccine. Both are around 95% effective and require two doses. Johnson & Johnson's vaccine was granted emergency use authorization on Feb. 27. It is 86% effective at preventing severe disease and requires one dose.

The graph below shows the percentage of Colorado's population that has been vaccinated with either one or both doses. Health experts say they expect we'll reach herd immunity when about 70% of the population is fully vaccinated.

> More information on the state's vaccination rollout plan can be found here.

> More information on the state's current phases can be found here.

Positivity 

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, 5%, to contain the virus.

Fatalities

CDPHE reports:

  • 6,048 deaths among people with COVID-19
  • 6,126 deaths due to COVID-19

The majority of deaths — 54% — are among people over age 80; 24% of deaths occurred in people between ages 70-79, and 12% were in people ages 60-69.

The graph below shows the number of people who have died from COVID-19 based on the date of their death.

On May 15, CDPHE shifted to a death documentation difference that divided into "deaths among cases" and "deaths due to COVID-19." Dr. Rachel Herlihy, a 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.

Hospitalizations

Of those who tested positive for the disease, a total of 24,250 cumulative hospitalizations have been reported.

As of March 16, 341 patients were hospitalized with the disease, according to the most recent data from the Colorado Hospital Association. Within the last 24 hours, 26 patients had been transferred or discharged.

(Note: 84% of facilities reported data as of March 16)

The graph below shows the number of people currently hospitalized with a COVID-19 diagnosis and the number of people who have been discharged or transferred 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.

Testing

According to CDPHE, 6,597,592 total tests have been administered and
2,654,490 people have been tested. All 64 counties have reported cases.     

This graph shows the total number of tests processed each day.

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