Denver COVID-19 Status Update: July 22, 2022

Published on July 22, 2022

The City and County of Denver provided the following COVID-19 status update

Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 Dominate Summer COVID-19 Variants

Omicron BA.4 and BA.5 are the dominant COVID-19 variants detected in Denver this summer. So far, these variants account for more than 90% of the COVID-19 cases in the United States and about 75% in Colorado. Variants are a normal part of infectious disease evolution. As viruses evolve and change, newer versions of the same virus develop and spread especially if the new version is more infectious.

Symptoms of BA.4 and BA.5 s are similar to those seen in previous variants, including congestion, headaches, cough, and fever.  Children may have more gastrointestinal symptoms, such as nausea, abdominal pain, vomiting, and diarrhea, compared with adults. At-home and PCR tests effectively detect the new variant.

While some of the statistics around these new variants sound scary, the tools available to protect yourself from past COVID-19 variants are still available and useful now. Tools include wearing a face covering in indoor public settings, even for those who are vaccinated; social distancing and staying up to date with the COVID-19 vaccine series, including booster doses. Vaccines are now available for those as young as 6 months old. The state’s vaccine calculator is a good way to keep track of when each family member will be eligible for a booster. If you haven’t started your vaccination series, now’s the time!  

 

CDC Recommends New Vaccine Option for Adults: Novavax

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) gave final authorization to Novavax, a protein vaccine against COVID-19, this week. Epidemiologists are calling the new option from Novavax a more traditional protein-based vaccine, like other familiar vaccines such as the flu, tetanus, and whooping cough. According to the CDC, vaccines using protein subunits like the Novavax vaccine have been used for more than 30 years in the U.S.

Having multiple types of vaccines offers more options and flexibility for the public. Novavax may be preferable for some people who would rather receive a vaccine other than an mRNA-based vaccine. It may also be clinically recommended for people who can’t get either Pfizer or Moderna. Novavax has not been authorized for a third dose or booster yet.

Last week, the federal government announced it secured 3.2 million doses of the Novavax vaccine, but they are still finalizing details about when it will be widely available in Colorado.

The Novavax vaccine is already being used in Europe, Canada, Australia, South Korea and other countries. Many are allowing booster doses and European regulators recently cleared the Novavax shots to be given to children as young as age 12. Like other vaccine makers, Novavax is testing versions of the vaccine updated to better match the newest Omicron sub-variants in anticipation of another round of boosters this fall and winter.

The Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE) encourages and supports Denver residents who make the best personal choice to protect themselves from COVID-19. Those who are immunocompromised or high risk for severe disease are encouraged to take additional precautions or speak to their healthcare provider.

Denver County Current CDC Level: Yellow

Denver County Current Status

*Numbers represent data as of Thursday, July 21, 2022 and are subject to change.      

Denver residents 6 months and older initiating vaccination – 1st dose received: 84.1%      

Denver residents 6 months and older completing vaccination – Fully vaccinated: 79.3%    

Denver residents 5 and older receiving booster dose- after initial vaccine series: 48.7%     

Denver one-week cumulative incidence rate (7-day average of cases per 100,000 population)  

As of 7/20/22: 202

Denver one-week average positivity rate*  

As of 7/20/22:  10.62%   

Hospitalizations  

Persons hospitalized with COVID-19 in Denver County: 29 (as of 7/15/22)      

Case Summary  

Cumulative Denver positive cases: 202,186 (as of 7/21/22)    

Cumulative Denver deaths from COVID-19: 1,427 (as of 7/21/22)