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Nine Presumptive Coronavirus Cases Identified In Aspen, Group Under Mandatory Isolation

Mar 11, 2020

Transmission electron microscopic image of an isolate from the first U.S. case of COVID-19, formerly known as 2019-nCoV. The spherical viral particles, colorized blue, contain cross-section through the viral genome, seen as black dots.
Credit Hannah A Bullock; Azaibi Tamin / Centers for Disease Control and Prevention



As of Wednesday afternoon, Pitkin County had the most presumptive positive coronavirus cases in Colorado. The total currently stands at nine, according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. All of the cases are connected to a woman from Australia who visited Aspen and tested positive upon return to her home country. 


13 people, also travelers from Australia, were placed under self-isolation after coming in contact with the woman. Ten people were tested and nine have since been identified as presumptive positive. Three refused to be tested.

The entire group is being placed under mandatory isolation orders from the Colorado Department of Public Health and are staying in several undisclosed locations throughout Aspen. None of the people have been hospitalized. The group will stay in isolation until at least next week, at which point individuals could be released after two negative tests.


"From a public health standpoint there are check-ins we do by phone," said Karen Koenemann, Pitkin County Public Health director. "They can self-monitor by taking temperature and reporting on symptoms."



These definitions from the Colorado Department of Health & Environment clarify the differences between isolation and quarantine.
Credit Colorado Department of Health & Environment


Isolation refers to the practice of keeping ill people away from public places to keep them away from those who are healthy. Quarantine refers to the practice of keeping apparently healthy people out of contact with others as they are monitored for potential symptoms of illness.


Aspen Public Radio is committed to providing accurate, up-to-date information about COVID-19 that our community can use to make decisions about their health.