State health experts worried about COVID-19 spike after Thanksgiving


DENVER (KDVR) — With most of the Denver metro area now under Red Level restrictions on the state’s COVID-19 dial, health experts say the most worrisome thing right now is the timing.

“We’re just days away from Thanksgiving,” said Dr. Eric France, chief medical officer with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE). “If we’re gathering for Thanksgiving and we’re bringing in other people from our bubble, there’s going to be an increase in COVID cases, hospitalizations, and death.”

France said right now our state’s hospitals are holding at about 86% capacity and that a holiday spike could force doctors to make tough choices about who gets a bed.

“If we’re getting particularly close to that scenario I think that’s when there’ll be a strong push to move into the purple on the dial,” France said.

But those are the kind of worst case scenarios the state’s top health experts have to plan for especially as we see other parts of the country hit their crisis levels.

“Mortuaries and temporary morgues, and it’s sad to say but that had to be part of our planning from the beginning,” France said.

Plan A is that that plan never has to be put in motion, France said it’ll take a joint effort from the public to stop the spread until science can step in.

“The vaccine is certainly a ray of hope and it is a light at the end of the tunnel for sure,” France said.

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