Denver COVID-19 Status Update - March 17, 2023

Published on March 17, 2023

Spring Has Sprung! Protect Yourself and Your Loved Ones This Season by Getting All of Your Recommended Vaccinations

It’s spring break time for kids, teens, college students and even parents. According to AAA, more families are traveling this year and making up for lost time as we navigate the endemic phase of COVID-19. The Denver Department of Public Health & Environment (DDPHE) wants to remind travelers staying up to date with COVID-19 vaccinations and boosters is still the best protection from serious illness and hospitalization. DDPHE also encourages travelers to consider wearing a high-quality mask while traveling on planes, trains, buses and while in transportation hubs such as airports and train stations. When people properly wear a high-quality mask, they protect themselves and those around them, and help keep travel and public transportation safer for everyone.

Vaccination continues to be the most effective way to keep yourself and the community safe. Staying up to date with vaccines and booster doses are essential in staying protected from the newer variants of COVID-19 and DDPHE strongly encourages anyone who is eligible to consider receiving a booster dose to provide better protection against currently circulating variants. Vaccines are free, readily available and requires no proof of insurance or identification. Many options for vaccinations are available at community sites and through a primary care provider or pharmacy. More information and resources are available at

Wastewater Testing Pilot Program Begins

Beginning this week, DDPHE is piloting a program to sample wastewater in various locations around the city. Wastewater monitoring is a reliable and proven indicator used throughout the pandemic to understand and predict transmission trends. Testing wastewater is one of many tools Denver epidemiologists use to understand community transmission of the virus and can act as an early warning system for public health officials. 

In the initial phase of the pilot, DDPHE is partnering with Denver Public Schools, the Denver Department of Transportation & Infrastructure, the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment, shelters for people experiencing homelessness and other public facilities to test wastewater for COVID-19. Wastewater sampling began this week and will be collected at sewer access points on public grounds or in manholes near participating locations. Residents may see DDPHE staff in personal protective equipment (PPE) collecting samples from time to time. There is no indication there is higher COVID-19 transmission at participating sites and the sites will not be required to implement any new prevention strategies based on the results of wastewater testing. 

While wastewater testing has been conducted at the state level for the last few years, Denver’s program will allow DDPHE to conduct testing at a more granular level and better understand data specific to Denver communities. Sampling will continue through June 2023. Eventually, wastewater sampling could be used to understand the spread of other viruses in the community. Additional information is available at the DDPHE Wastewater Info/FAQ and the CDPHE Wastewater Info Page

Cesar Chavez Day City Office Closures 

DDPHE, along with other city offices, will be closed Monday, Mar. 27, 2023, in observance of Cesar Chavez Day. 

Denver County Current CDC Level: Low/Green

*We are currently experiencing technical difficulties and data access issues related to the information contained in our online dashboards. We apologize for any inconvenience as we continue to work on a solution. The numbers below are current as of the dates shown.

Denver County Current Status  

*Numbers represent data as of Monday, February 13, 2023, and are subject to change.                   

Denver residents 6 months and older initiating vaccination – 1st dose received: 87% 

Denver residents 6 months and older completing vaccination – Fully vaccinated: 79%                

Denver residents 5 and older receiving booster dose- after initial vaccine series: 53%          

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

As of 3/15/23: 60.8per 100,000           

Denver one-week average positivity rate*  

As of 3/15/23: 10.9%              


Persons hospitalized with COVID-19 in Denver County: 16 (as of 3/15/23)                   

Case Summary  

Cumulative Denver positive cases: 225,584 (as of 3/15/23)                 

Cumulative Denver deaths from COVID-19: 1,547 (as of 2/13/23)