Coronavirus cases, hospitalizations increase in Colorado

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DENVER  |  Hospitalizations in Colorado for COVID-19 have begun to increase for the first time in months, while the state’s rate of positive coronavirus test results has jumped since the first week of June, officials said.

Transmission of COVID-19 is increasing and the rise in new cases is not simply due to more testing, The Denver Post reports.

The rate of positive cases increased from 2.7% the week of June 7 to 3.48% last week, The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment said.

Health department data indicate that after two consecutive weeks of increases, the state recorded 1,734 new confirmed cases between June 29 and July 5, a slight decrease from the 1,748 cases reported the previous week.

Colorado experienced an increase in the number of new coronavirus infections for the first time since April three weeks ago, when the department reported 1,484 additional cases the week ending June 21.

The rise in confirmed virus cases occurred across the state, with counties in both the metro area and the high country reporting double-digit percentage increases in infections during the second half of June.

State and local public health officials attributed the increase to behavioral changes as communities and the economy reopen, including less social distancing.

There also has been a growing number of infections among young people, with case clusters reported following social gatherings, protests and travel.

Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment officials did not immediately respond to questions.

For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. But for some — especially older adults and people with existing health problems — it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death.

The number of infections is thought to be far higher because many people have not been tested, and studies suggest people can be infected with the virus without feeling sick.