COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Governor Jared Polis described COVID-19 in Colorado as the "crisis of the unvaccinated." New state data shows that 88% of Coloradans currently battling COVID-19 in the hospital are unvaccinated.
El Paso County's incidence rate hit 254 cases per 100,000 residents, which is a 27% increase from the week before.
This week's milestone of 75% of Coloradans getting at least one dose of the COVID shot isn't enough, according to health officials. Polis is encouraging those who are uncertain about the vaccine to speak with their primary care doctor.
“We have 796 of our fellow Coloradans that are in the hospital now with COVID," Gov. Polis said. “This is really a crisis of the unvaccinated.”
Nearly 9 out of 10 the hospitalized Coloradans are unvaccinated. Colorado currently has five children under the age of 11 that are in the hospital with COVID. Six children between the ages of 12 to 17 are fighting the virus in the hospital.
“Let me clear there is no reason for any child 12 to 17 right now to be hospitalized from COVID because it is all but entirely preventable. For that age group, the vaccine is even more effective," Polis said.
Colorado doctors said during Thursday's press conference that the pandemic has pushed healthcare workers to reconsider their careers.
“The people who remain unvaccinated not only put their families at risk but also their children, friends, neighbors, and other members of your community. The decision also holds the future of healthcare at risk as frontline workers contemplate leaving healthcare," Dr. Marc Moss said.
State health leaders are concerned about a possible spike during the Labor Day holiday weekend.
Gov. Polis has asked Coloradans to consider smaller gatherings, especially if they are unvaccinated.