Print Friendly, PDF & Email

Two people are hospitalized at Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center with suspected infection of COVID-19, according to Chaffee County Public Health officials. Public Health Director Andrea Carlstrom said Thursday during a midday online briefing that the two patients were admitted Wednesday and are being kept in isolation rooms at the hospital.

Heart of the Rockies Regional Medical Center.

Thursday, the hospital had 11 patients at the 25-bed facility, or about a 44 percent occupancy. Additional rooms, including surgery rooms, have been converted to be able to accommodate additional virus patients.

Earlier, officials announced a third person had died from COVID-19. The latest was a 96-year-old woman who had been a patient at Columbine Manor Care Center, where an outbreak of the virus has infected at least 22 residents and staff. A total of 37 county residents were confirmed to have the virus.

The totals locally and statewide are fluid and change daily as infections and patients who have recovered are counted.

As of Thursday, Carlstrom reported some 5,655 reported cases in 54 counties  in Colorado, with 1,162 hospitalized and a total of 193 deaths. Nearly 30,000 have been tested, and statewide, some 44 residential and non-hospital health facilities reported infections. At Columbine, testing of all residents, whether or not they show symptoms, has been initiated. Calls for additional information from the facility have not been returned.

Some testing of formerly infected individuals has began on a limited scale in Colorado and elsewhere, and Carlstrom said officials were trying to bring blood antibody testing to Chaffee County as well. The blood tests, she said, usually have a short turnaround time.

Carlstrom said  the public response to a Google form to report businesses or individuals who were not complying with public health orders in the wake of the spread of the virus was ‘not well-received,’ and was subsequently removed from Facebook, along with accompanying negative comments.

County Board Chairman Greg Felt also made a presentation, complimenting the support of the state health department and expressing appreciation for all local healthcare workers during this Public Health Week. He complimented Carlstrom and her staff, saying their efforts ‘are deeply appreciated.’