Colorado’s COVID public health order extended a month

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment extended its public health order meant to combat COVID-19 on Thursday, but it won’t have much effect on most residents unless the virus starts spreading more widely.

The public health order will remain in effect through May 13. It requires people to wear masks in certain settings if the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention declare there is “medium” or “high” spread of the virus.

Right now, San Juan County is the only part of Colorado that’s not classified as having “low” transmission on the CDC’s dashboard. The levels are based on hospitalizations and case rates.

In areas with higher transmission, the order would require people 12 and older to wear masks in medical settings, homeless shelters and correctional facilities, including community corrections. They would also be required in public transportation facilities and vehicles.

Nothing prevents facilities in low-transmission areas from requiring masks if they so chose.

The order also requires people working in state-run nursing homes and correctional facilities to either get vaccinated or obtain an exemption, and orders hospitals to report data about their capacity.

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