CDPHE to release a batch of past cases from the winter omicron surge

STATEWIDE (May 12, 2022) — Last month, the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment changed its method of reporting past cases to make it easier for third parties to accurately calculate and display Colorado’s current COVID-19 case rates. As part of this change, CDPHE announced it would release cases with report dates more than 30 days old in batches every two weeks. The department’s regular 4 p.m. data update on Thursday, May 12, 2022, will include a batch of previous cases, adding 7,810 cases to the state’s cumulative count with report dates from the winter omicron surge. 

This reporting method ensures that only recent cases are added to the state’s cumulative case count daily. The state made this change in response to Colorado residents expressing continued frustration and confusion when comparing local reports with national ones, even though the source data is the same. CDPHE strongly recommends third parties who use cumulative case counts to calculate Colorado’s COVID-19 case rates exclude Thursday, May 12, 2022 from their calculations for moving averages. The majority of cases CDPHE will add to Colorado’s cumulative case count on Thursday, May 12 are not new cases and do not reflect an increase in transmission in Colorado

In order to share the most accurate case data possible, CDPHE updates all COVID-19 case data, past and present, from the state’s reportable disease registry. CDPHE recommends that the best practice for analyzing COVID-19 case data over time is to pull updated data for Colorado’s full time series. Updated time series are published on CDPHE’s Open Data Portal

“We made this change in reporting last month to help third parties more accurately report Colorado’s current COVID-19 data,” said Dr. Rachel Herlihy, State Epidemiologist. “We are hopeful that this communication regarding our bi-weekly release of cases from the winter omicron surge will provide an opportunity to see how these batches are released and presented on Colorado’s COVID-19 data dashboard. Third parties can exclude these bi-weekly batches of past cases to give people the most accurate information about the current state of COVID-19 in Colorado.”

The most accurate source for Colorado data related to the pandemic remains CDPHE’s dashboard located at covid19.colorado.gov/data

Continue to stay up to date by visiting covid19.colorado.gov.

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