NewsCovering Colorado


Polis says over 100,000 age 70 and older should get the vaccine this week

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Posted at 9:39 AM, Jan 19, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-20 10:57:04-05

COLORADO SPRINGS — Gov. Jared Polis provided an update Tuesday on Colorado's response to COVID-19.

The governor began by reminding Coloradans that it's estimated one in every 105 people in the state have COVID-19, and urged everyone to remain cautious by staying socially distant and wearing a mask. People that are asymptomatic may still not be showing symptoms.

He also said with the increase in testing, we have dropped below the 5% positivity rate for the first time in months. In the upcoming months and with the vaccines rolling out more quickly, Governor Polis hopes to get back to normal.

"We rapidly seek to get every Coloradan who wants it {a COVID-19 vaccine} vaccinated," said Gov. Polis. "From day one, our focus has been distributing every dose of vaccine distributed from the Federal government to save lives and end the pandemic."

We are now in Phase 1B, which is distributing the vaccine to those 70 years and older. The governor hopes by the end of February, 70% of Coloradans in that age group will be vaccinated. With current supply levels, he believes it is the soonest this can happen.

"We are doing everything that we can to get every vaccine that we get in Colorado to help out, into the arm of somebody over age 70 to get that protection," said Polis.

He estimates that anywhere from 110,000 to 120,00 Coloradans over age 70 will get the vaccine this week. It is equivalent to about one in five Coloradans in this age group.

Governor Polis also mentioned that anyone expecting to get their second dose of Pfizer or Moderna will still get their vaccine as well this week.

"We hope that the incoming administration can provide more visibility and transparency to us so we know what is coming," said Polis. "Right now, we only hear about three or four days ahead."

The governor is hoping to get at least a two weeks heads up. That way appointments are not canceled due to a lack of supply.

According to Polis, over 5.5% of Colorado's population has received a COVID-19 vaccine.

Governor Polis also addressed the Presidential Inauguration Day happening on Wednesday and relayed that security and preparation have been taken; over 200 Colorado National Guard members have been sent to the Capitol to help ensure a safe and peaceful transition.

Here in Colorado, the security situation is being monitored. Governor Polis signed an executive order on Tuesday to activate Colorado's National Guard to be prepared for any civil unrest.

This follows his press conference from Friday where Polis learned the federal vaccine reserve does not exist, impacting the state's plan for doses in the next few weeks. About half of all vaccine doses go to Colorado hospital systems, with 20% going through community health clinics, 20% through local public health agencies and 10% through retail pharmacies, which are helping vaccinate nursing homes.

Polis reiterated the importance of vaccinating as many people as possible to be able to return back to normal. He said the state continues to provide relief resources for businesses through the Rural Jump Start Program, Small Business Relief Program, and Paycheck Protection Program.
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