Dialysis clinics on Colorado’s eastern plains have accounted for all patients and have returned to full operations, except for one clinic, after storms dumped 20 inches of rain this past week.
There are 12 dialysis clinics within 25 miles of Boulder, Colo., one of the towns hardest hit by the flooding, in cities like Longmont, Lafayette, Brighton, Greeley and Boulder. Most of the clinics are owned by DaVita or by American Renal Associates. DaVita spokesperson Vince Hancock told NN&I that its Boulder clinic was closed for one day before resuming operations, but its Sterling facility will remain closed for some time because the city’s water had to be shut off.
“The town of Sterling has been, for all intents and purposes, cut in half and the town’s water system will need to be shut off,” wrote Colorado’s Network 15 executive director Darlene Rodgers in an email to NN&I. “Town’s residents are not able to use any water or drains for an undetermined amount of time. The only facility in town [DaVita] has an emergency plan which has been activated and all the patients have a place to dialyze.”
Rodgers said in some cases patients and facility staff were stranded at their dialysis facilities at the onset of the storm because the flooding made the roads impassable.
The Colorado Office of Emergency Management confirmed at least eight people have died from the flooding, with 600 still considered missing. More than 17 counties in the state were affected; 1,500 homes have been destroyed, and more than 11,750 residents had to be evacuated, officials said.
"You've got to remember, a lot of these folks lost cellphones, landlines, the Internet four to five days ago," Gov. John Hickenlooper said on NBC's Today show. "I am very hopeful that the vast majority of these people are safe and sound."
In the mountain towns, major roads were washed away or covered by mud and rock slides. Hundreds of homes around Estes Park, next to Rocky Mountain National Park, could be unreachable and uninhabitable for up to a year, town officials there said.
Weather reports indicated that the rest of the week should be sunny with no rain anticipated.