Arapahoe County to remain at Level Blue under new Public Health Order

Published on April 16, 2021

TCHD COVID-19 Public Health Order graphic

Restrictions to last until May 16 to help control spread of COVID-19 

Beginning today, Arapahoe County businesses and residents will follow simplified restrictions issued by the Tri-County Health Department, with the continued goal of controlling and slowing the spread of COVID-19. 

Since January 1, 2020 there have been 136,989 known positive cases in Adams, Arapahoe and Douglas Counties, with 1,695 deaths in those counties. In the past 14 days, there have been 349 confirmed cases in Arapahoe County. There also is evidence of contagious and potentially more severe variant strains in Colorado. With cases going up and a limited COVID-19 vaccine supply, Tri-County Health Department officials want everyone to remain cautious for a brief extension of time until vaccines are more widely available. Additional data is available on the Tri-County Health Department website.

The TCHD Public Health Order will be in effect from April 16 through May 15, and highlights include: 

  • Phase 1: Moving Toward Full Re-Opening, April 16 - May 15 (30 days): Counties will move to a new level on the Dial, one Level less restrictive than the level indicated by their metrics on April 15. For example, a county at Level Yellow metrics on the current state Dial on April 15 will move to Level Blue on April 16 and remain there until May 15.
  • Phase 2: Observation Period, May 16 - August 16 (90 days): Counties will move to Level Clear, which has no restrictions, subject to TCHD observation of hospital admission rates in the County.  In Level Clear, businesses will be able to operate at 100 percent capacity with no mitigation requirements, although face-covering requirements may still apply.  

Arapahoe County is at Level Yellow metrics, with a one-week cumulative incidence rate is 184.1, with a positivity rate of 6.4% and six days of declining or stable hospitalization rates. As such the County will remain at Level Blue restrictions for the Phase 1 timeframe. 

To enhance personal safety and help reduce levels of COVID-19 transmission across our communities, our residents and visitors should continue to social distance; wear masks in public indoor areas; avoid large gatherings or crowds, especially indoors; stay home while they are sick and get tested for COVID-19 if they have symptoms; wash their hands often; and get vaccinated as soon as possible. 

Arapahoe County will continue to operate its Five-Star Recovery Partner Program during this time, as the program does provide businesses some additional capacity benefits.  

Summary of new Colorado Public Health Order 20-38 (view attachment(PDF, 176KB))


  • Rescinds and replaces PHO 20-36 COVID-19 Dial and PHO 20-29 Voluntary and Elective Surgeries and Procedures.
  • Requires compliance with Executive Order D 2020 138, as amended and extended, concerning face coverings.
  • Requires all businesses and government entities consider reasonable accommodations for individuals who cannot access or cannot take COVID-19 vaccines, follow the mask executive order, and strongly encourages following CDPHE sector guidance for disease mitigation.
  • Requires 6 feet distancing and masks for mass indoor gatherings, defined as gatherings in public indoor spaces that exceed 100 individuals, and caps these gatherings to no more than 500 people absent a variance.  Exempts places of worship, retail settings, restaurants that have seated dining and do not have gathering spaces that allow for more than 100 people to congregate, and allows local public health agencies to approve proms and graduation plans in excess of these caps in accordance with CDPHE guidance.
  • Requires schools to follow the CDPHE schools and child care outbreak guidance and further requires that when learning is all remote, extracurricular activities are not authorized in person.
  • Requires CDPHE approval of all outdoor seated, ticket event venues in excess of 30,000 square feet, in consultation with the local public health agency.
  • Continues existing hospital reporting requirements.
  • Continues authority for CDPHE to require additional restrictions for any county when a county's resident hospitalizations threaten to exceed 85% of hospital or hospital system capacity.