In an effort to effectively distribute the COVID-19 vaccine, the state is looking for creative ways to get the vaccine out to more people quickly.
The COVID-19 vaccine is slowly being distributed across the population. Colorado Governor Jared Polis announced just a few days ago that Coloradans over 70 years of age can sign up for their appointment, but it may take a while to distribute to every eligible citizen.
In an update on Tuesday, January 12, Polis said about 70,000 doses are being allocated each week to those over 70. There are more than 500,000 Coloradans who meet the age criteria for the vaccine, so it could take until the end of February to distribute to everyone.
"There's not enough vaccine to do it this week, to give everybody 70 and up a vaccine," Polis said in the morning update. "Not everybody can possibly have that appointment in a week."
Working with UCHealth, the state is working on creative ways to speed up the process. They hope to open a drive-thru vaccination site in Denver by the end of the month that could vaccinate up to 10,000 people each day.
In addition, UCHealth is launching a call center so people can ask questions and schedule vaccine appointments over the phone. The call centers will be able to reach those who don't have internet access.
"It is so very important to be able to think about equity in the delivery of a vaccine but also to bring the vaccine to communities knowing that some people don't have access to cars, transportation, and maybe even the internet," said UCHealth Chief Innovation Officer, Dr. Richard Zane, who was also at the morning update.
Polis also announced during the update that the state is working on updating the distribution guidelines to bring the eligible age down to 65.
UCHealth is giving out vaccines to those who are eligible under the state distribution guidelines. Patients and nonpatients can register and make an appointment through UCHealth. Centura Health is only vaccinating current patients but hopes to offer it to the entire community when they get more doses. Salud Family Health Centers are focusing on vaccinating hard to reach community members, including those who aren't part of a major health system. Salud is accepting appointments online.
Let us know in the comments if you're planning on getting the vaccination when it becomes available.