‘V-Day’ at last: 1st COVID-19 vaccinations arrive in Colorado
DENVER (KKTV) - History was made with a doorbell and a signature.
A few minutes after 8 a.m. Monday, the first batch of COVID-19 vaccines arrived in Colorado.
Gov. Jared Polis couldn’t contain his excitement as he waited for FedEx to arrive.
“Any minute now, we’re going to hear a doorbell. Oh, is that -- that’s not a doorbell, that’s a knock, but okay. And then we’re going to, of course, let the vaccine in. [Doorbell rings] Oh! Here we go!”
“I’ve been waiting to give this signature for nine months,” Polis told the delivery driver.
Now that the vaccines have arrived, Polis is urging swift action by hospitals, calling on them to begin administering the first vaccinations within 72 hours of receiving the shipments.
“Colorado is expecting to begin receiving initial, limited doses of COVID vaccine this week, and we need to be ready to hit the ground running. Our ability to quickly vaccinate prioritized populations and report those doses as administered to the Colorado Immunization Information System is paramount to Colorado’s ability to receive future allocations of COVID vaccine and end this public health crisis. With vaccine distribution plans coming together, I ask that you please affirm that your facility/organization is able to administer the COVID vaccinations within 72 hours of receiving the vaccine,” read an excerpt of a letter by Polis to hospitals early Monday.
The full letter can be read here.
Memorial Central in Colorado Springs has said it will begin giving vaccinations at 2 p.m. Monday.
Vaccines will be administered in three phases in Colorado, beginning with the highest-risk health care workers, long-term care facility staff, and long-term care residents. Highest-risk health care workers are defined as those who have had direct contact with COVID-19 patients for 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. The general public, defined as those between 18-64 without high-risk conditions, is expected to receive the vaccine by summer.
Dr. Anthony Fauci and other medical experts have said that if Americans widely embraced the vaccines, the country could achieve herd immunity by the end of the summer. At least 75 percent of the country’s population will need to be vaccinated to reach that standard.
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