COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KRDO) -- Tuesday, Governor Jared Polis, along with State Epidemiologist Dr. Rachel Herlihy, provided an update on Colorado’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.
During a press conference, Polis shared an overview of the state’s plan to administer booster shots, an announcement of the opening of several community vaccination sites, and provided information about a new at-home testing program provided by the state.
“I’m proud that Colorado has the sixth-lowest COVID-19 rates in the country, but in order to lower that even further and effectively end this pandemic, our state must always have a comprehensive approach to combating this virus,” said Polis. “ The opening of four community vaccination sites will help us efficiently roll out even more vaccines while making COVID-19 testing available right from the comfort of your home will aid our state in slowing and stopping the spread of COVID-19. The virus is not tired of us, Coloradans, so we must use every tool in the toolbox to defeat this pandemic. But it’s scientifically proven and clear that our most effective tool in this fight is the lifesaving, free and effective COVID-19 vaccine. Trust the science and get your vaccine today.”
Polis announced the revamp of the state’s COVID-19 testing program which will now offer Rapid-At-Home testing to Coloradans directly in their homes without the need to have a medical professional witness test administration. The state has purchased 2 million Binax rapid tests. Individuals can sign up to have tests delivered straight to their homes.
Herlihy provided an update on the state of COVID in Colorado.
“There is some variability in what we are seeing in ICU capacity across the state. While Colorado’s COVID-19 rates have started to go down, we are still seeing some higher rates in northern parts of the state. Counties that tend to have the highest hospitalization rates tend to be the counties with the lowest vaccination rates. So the overall message is that at the individual level the vaccine will prevent you from being hospitalized and at the county and state level, vaccinations help keep ICU capacity in check,” said Dr. Rachel Herlihy.
Polis also provided an overview of how the state will quickly administer booster shots to those who are currently FDA eligible to receive one. Health officials are ready to administer boosters to individuals in nursing homes beginning this week.
Additionally, Polis said the state has the infrastructure in place to immediately start administering boosters once the FDA clears it for additional age groups. Governor Polis urged the FDA to make the booster available to everyone as soon as possible.
Last week, Raytheon, an aerospace company employing 3,500 Coloradans, announced that they would be requiring their U.S. workforce to be fully vaccinated. There are many other companies in Colorado who are doing the same to protect their employees including Arrow Electronics, Tyson Foods, Northwestern Mutual, Bonanno Concepts, Vail Resorts and, Arapahoe Basin and others.
To support these employers, their workforce, and all Coloradans who are looking to get their first, second or booster, Polis announced the opening of four community vaccination sites with the capacity to accommodate up to 1,000 doses of the vaccine every day. These sites will only be operating at this capacity until September 30.
- Aurora - Aurora Municipal Center
- Drive-through clinic
- Hours of operation: 9 a.m.- 7 p.m.
- Littleton - Southwest Plaza Mall
- Drive-through clinic
- Hours of operation:10 a.m. - 7 p.m.
- Colorado Springs - Chapel Hills Mall
- Walk-in clinic
- Hours of operation: 10 a.m.- 5:30 p.m.
- Dick’s Sporting Goods Park parking lot
- Lot F 9/20-22, Lot H 9/23-9/30
- Walk-up clinic
- Hours of operation: 11 a.m. -9 p.m.
Appointments are not required at any of the locations, but Coloradans can pre-register online.
Additionally, Coloradans are able to get either their first, second, or third shot at any of the more than 1,600 enrolled vaccine providers in the state ranging from pharmacies to primary care providers. For more information, click here.