Gov. Polis provides update on Colorado’s COVID-19 response & vaccination progress

DENVER – Today, Governor Jared Polis provided an update on Colorado’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the State’s efforts to vaccinate Coloradans. Governor Polis was joined by Jill Hunsaker Ryan, Executive Director of CDPHE, and Rick Palacio, Strategic Consultant to the Governor. 

“Colorado is rapidly and successfully ensuring all doses of the lifesaving vaccine are quickly put into arms – not sitting on shelves. That is why we are in the top tier of states when it comes to administering the vaccine and we continue to call for more to be deployed to our state.  Since the state received the very first doses of the vaccine, we have been focused on distributing them in a way that is equitable, saves the most lives, and ends the public health crisis as soon as possible,” said Governor Jared Polis. “ We are making a deliberate effort to meet Coloradans in their communities. No matter where you live, who you are, or what you do – we want to make sure that you can get the vaccine quickly and efficiently when that time comes.”

Like the rest of the country, Colorado is dependent on the federal government for our weekly supply of this life saving and crisis ending vaccine.

“We want everyone to know the vaccine is free, so income, immigration status, and health insurance should not be barriers. It is important that every adult who can get the vaccine does get vaccinated, so when you get the chance, please take it” said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, Executive Director of CDPHE. 

Colorado has partnered with community organizations to stand up drive-through vaccination clinics in San Luis, Center, Alamosa, Aurora, Denver, and more to make connections with Coloradans who may not otherwise have a place to receive the vaccine. Through events like these we have vaccinated hundreds of Coloradans 70 and older, and the State is looking to hold even more events like these moving forward. These types of venues will help ensure that Coloradans who might not have access to a health care provider will still have access to the vaccine. The State has also taken steps to ensure that the inability to present a photo ID plays no part in whether or not someone can get the vaccine. 

“We need to end this crisis that has been brought on by this pandemic. We know this virus will be with us for some time, getting the vaccine into arms can end this crisis,” said Rick Palacio, Strategic Consultant to the Governor. 

Governor Polis provided an update on how Coloradans who are 70 and older can sign up to receive the vaccine through the State’s major health care providers. Coloradans who are not yet eligible to receive the vaccine can still sign up through the State’s health care providers to receive vaccine alerts and sign up for a spot on a provider’s vaccine waitlist. All major providers have also provided toll-free numbers where people can call to make an appointment and find out more information about the vaccine. Coloradans do not have to be a current member of any major health care provider to receive the vaccine. 

View today’s presentation and press conference

View the videos featured in today’s press conference in English and Spanish.

Gov. Polis provides update on Colorado’s COVID-19 response & vaccination progress

Gov. Polis provides update on Colorado’s COVID-19 response & limited vaccine supply chain

DENVER – Today, Governor Jared Polis shared an update on Colorado’s response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and the state’s mass vaccination program. 

“The main limiting factor right now in our fight against the spread of COVID-19 in Colorado is the limited supply of the vaccine. I share the frustration of our 70+ population and others who want to get vaccinated. Colorado has the ability to utilize three to five times of vaccines based on our current infrastructure, and our local public health departments and providers across the state have done yeoman’s work to get shots into arms,” said Gov. Polis. “The reality is we are exhausting our supply each week and it’s frustrating how slow we are receiving vaccination doses but we are hopeful that the amount we recover will Increase over time.”

The state of Colorado has been among the top 10 of states in the U.S. in terms of vaccines administered. Gov. Polis reminded Coloradans that the vaccine is free and if an individual is asked to provide financial information it is a scam. Last week, Gov. Polis signed an Executive Order ensuring that the vaccine is free for Coloradans, and insurance status will not be used to deny or deprioritize any patient from getting the vaccine.

Governor Polis discussed a letter sent to Colorado’s health care providers and local public health agencies. Both Moderna and Pfizer vaccines that had been designated as second doses should now be used as first doses for Coloradans ages 70 and up during the week of January 18 through 25. Colorado will backfill additional second doses as needed in the upcoming weeks. Health care providers should retain only enough second doses that are required for this week. Read the FAQ on the state website. 

Governor Polis also provided an update on measures Colorado is taking to prepare for Inauguration Day. Colorado is continuing to closely monitor the security situation.  To ensure the State is prepared for potential civil unrest, Governor Polis signed an Executive Order today declaring a disaster emergency and authorizing employment of the Colorado National Guard to assist with potential civil unrest in the State.  

Gov. Polis provides update on Colorado’s COVID-19 response & limited vaccine supply chain

Garfield County COVID-19 summary

For the week of 1.17.20

Garfield County, CO – Over the past few weeks, COVID-19 cases have remained stable. Any potential upswing in numbers from the holidays has passed. There are still days with large numbers of cases being reported, such as 55 cases on January 14, and a 7-day rolling average of 29.6. This is a decrease from mid-December, but the health department remains cautious especially in light of case rates in neighboring counties.

Cases since last week

  • 207 cases reported/added since last week for a 7-day rolling average of 29.6 cases added per day
  • Dates with most cases added:
    • 1/14: 55


Current phase: 1A and Limited 1B (above the line)   
      Providers vaccinating      # Vaccine Received      % vaccine administered      1st Dose      2nd Dose#Health-workers & 1st Responders Vaccinated      #70+ vaccinated
Valley View Hospital2,947100%2,7991481,6881,111
Grand River Health1,380100%1,29387544749


  • 35 confirmed COVID-19 related deaths
  • 2 deaths have occurred amongst COVID-19 cases, by were ruled to be caused by something other than COVID-19
  • 0 new deaths reported since last week

State Dial information (Jan 11 to Jan 17, 2021)

  • Two-week incidence:
    • Monday: 872.6
    • Tuesday: 876.7
    • Wednesday: 857.6
    • Thursday: 827.7
    • Friday: 852.6
    • Saturday: 860.9
    • Sunday: 809.4
      • Stabilizing number of cases over the past two weeks is positive news.
  • Hospitalizations, days with stable or declining hospitalizations:
    • Monday: 11
    • Tuesday: 10
    • Wednesday: 9
    • Thursday: 9
    • Friday: 9
    • Saturday: 10
    • Sunday: 9
  • Test positivity:
  • Monday: 9.2%
  • Tuesday: 9.1%
  • Wednesday: 8.8%
  • Thursday: 8.2%
  • Friday: 8.5%
  • Saturday: 8.4%
  • Sunday: 8.1%
    • Continuing declines in positivity over the past two weeks is good news for mitigation efforts.
Geographic AreaTotal CasesCurrently HospitalizedDeathsRecovered
Global94,996,432Not Available2,029,84552,268,653
United States23,923,474124,387397,494N/A
Garfield County4,651N/A35 confirmedN/A
Eagle County4,016N/A14N/A
Pitkin County1,676N/A4N/A
Mesa County10,75851935,862

*Statistics from Johns Hopkins University,, and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment

Garfield County COVID-19 news and information

Garfield County Public Health is posting frequent updates in the news media, on Facebook @garfieldhealth, and on our website on the COVID & Public Health page. To navigate to the COVID & Public Health page from the main Garfield County site, click the red COVID & Public Health rectangle at the top of the page. Sign up to be notified about Garfield County COVID news at

Garfield County COVID-19 summary

Updated Grand River Health COVID-19 cumulative stats for January, 19 2021

RIFLE, COLO. – The following are updated statistics from Grand River Health:

Grand River Health COVID-19 cumulative stats – 1/19/2021:

Number of individuals tested: 6,240
Positive results: 1,030
Pending results: 21
New positives since 1/14/21: 7
Patients admitted with COVID-19 since outbreak began: 39
Patients transferred: 12
Patients discharged: 27

Reported numbers are from Grand River Health only and could change at any time.

Seniors 70+ vaccinations: To know when COVID-19 vaccines become available, please watch the Grand River Health Facebook page and the website at There are no walk ins at this time. All vaccinations will be done by appointment only. We appreciate your patience.

All clinic services, hospital and specialty services are open. All patients will be screened appropriately and patients with current symptoms will be scheduled for appointments in the respiratory clinic.

All appointments can be made by calling 625-1100. Patients are asked to wear an ear loop mask while in the facility (no gators, bandanas or buffs please).

Updated Grand River Health COVID-19 cumulative stats for January, 19 2021

CDPHE: State launches COVID-19 vaccine informational campaign

REMOTE – Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) launched the “Get the COVID-19 Vaccine Facts” campaign today to convey that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective.  The campaign reinforces that Coloradans should rely on CDPHE and other reliable sources for information about the vaccines. State officials ask Coloradans to “get the facts” on the COVID-19 vaccines, so they are ready when it is their turn. The launch comes at a pivotal time, as more people are able to get the COVID-19 vaccine, according to the state’s distribution process. 

The campaign features some of Colorado’s top medical professionals and health advocates from diverse backgrounds talking about the safety and effectiveness of the vaccine.

“With the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines underway, we know people have questions, and it’s crucial to reach as many Coloradans as possible with fact-based information.  When it’s your turn to be vaccinated, we want you to be ready,” said CDPHE Executive Director Jill Hunsaker Ryan.

The campaign will build awareness of where to access trusted sources of information on the vaccine, with an additional focus on Colorado’s communities that have been disproportionately impacted by this pandemic, including those aged 70 and over, and Black, Hispanic/Latino, American Indian, and Asian Pacific Islander Coloradans. 

A critical part of the campaign will be the involvement of community influencers, including medical professionals and community leaders, throughout the state from diverse backgrounds of many races, nationalities, ages, genders, abilities, and more. In conjunction with more traditional media efforts, influencers will ensure the broad reach of the campaign. 

As more people get vaccinated, Dr. Rachel Herlihy, state epidemiologist, stressed the importance of continuing to follow public health protocols, wearing your mask, and keeping your distance. 

“We can’t let up now. It’s important to continue to protect yourself and your family from COVID-19 until a large portion of Coloradans have been vaccinated,” said Dr. Herlihy. 

Get the COVID-19 Facts campaign will run statewide through March 31. To share messages from the Get the COVID-19 Facts campaign, like and follow CDPHE on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram.

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El estado lanza una campaña informativa sobre la vacuna contra el COVID-19

REMOTO, (18 de enero de 2021): El Departamento de Salud Pública y Medio Ambiente de Colorado (CDPHE, por sus siglas en inglés) lanzó el día de hoy la campaña “Obtén información confiable sobre la vacuna contra el COVID-19” para comunicar que las vacunas contra el COVID-19 son seguras y efectivas. La campaña reafirma que los habitantes de Colorado deben contar con el CDPHE y otras fuentes confiables para informarse sobre las vacunas. Oficiales estatales les piden a los habitantes de Colorado que “obtengan la información” sobre las vacunas contra el COVID-19, para que estén preparados cuando les llegue su turno. El lanzamiento llega en un momento decisivo a medida que más personas pueden recibir la vacuna contra el COVID-19, de acuerdo al proceso de distribución del estado.

La campaña presenta a algunos de los profesionales médicos y defensores de la salud más destacados de Colorado. Estos profesionales provienen de diversos orígenes y hablan sobre la seguridad y efectividad de la vacuna.  

“Con la distribución de la vacuna contra el COVID-19 en progreso, sabemos que las personas tienen preguntas y es crucial llegar a tantos habitantes de Colorado como sea posible, con información basada en los hechos. Cuando sea su turno para vacunarse, queremos que esté preparado”, dijo Jill Hunsaker, Directora Ejecutiva del CDPHE.

La campaña creará conciencia sobre dónde acceder a fuentes confiables de información sobre la vacuna, con un enfoque adicional en las comunidades de Colorado que han sido impactadas de manera desproporcionada por esta pandemia, incluyendo a las personas de 70 años de edad y mayores, y a los habitantes de Colorado de origen afroamericano, hispano/latino, indígena americano e isleño del pacifico asiático.

Una parte crítica de la campaña será la participación de personas con influencia en la comunidad, incluyendo a profesionales médicos y líderes comunitarios provenientes de todo el estado y de diversos orígenes, razas, nacionalidades, edades, géneros, habilidades y más.  En conjunto con esfuerzos de los medios más tradicionales, las personas con influencia asegurarán el alcance amplio de la campaña.

La Dr. Rachel Herlihy, epidemióloga del estado, hizo hincapié en que mientras más personas se vacunen, es importante continuar siguiendo los protocolos de salud pública, el uso del tapabocas y mantener su distancia.  

“No podemos relajarnos ahora. Es importante continuar protegiéndose a sí mismo y a su familia del COVID-19 hasta que una gran cantidad de habitantes de Colorado hayan sido vacunados”, dijo la Dr. Herlihy. 

La campaña “Obtén información confiable sobre la vacuna contra el COVID-19” será distribuida por todo el estado hasta el 31 de marzo. Para compartir mensajes de la campaña “Obtén información confiable sobre la vacuna contra el COVID-19”, siga los sitios del CDPHE en Facebook, Twitter, o Instagram

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CDPHE: State launches COVID-19 vaccine informational campaign

CDPHE, Governor’s Office Update Black & Latino Caucuses on Vaccine & Request Support for Ongoing Efforts

DENVER – Today, Jill Hunsaker Ryan, Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE), and Rick Palacio, Strategic Consultant to the Governor sent a letter to the Black Democratic Legislative Caucus of Colorado and the Colorado Democratic Latino Caucus. 

“We reach out today to update the Caucuses on our recent actions to quickly administer vaccines to our most vulnerable populations and to ask for your partnership to inform our ongoing efforts as well as your help as we pursue a $6 million dollar budget request to increase our ongoing commitment to achieving health equity in Colorado. We not only request your support for this budget amendment, but request your thought partnership in reimagining the work that CDPHE does to address health inequities in a more comprehensive way than the department has been resourced to do in the past,” Director Ryan and Palacio wrote in the letter to the legislative leaders. 

Last week, Governor Jared Polis and Jill Hunsaker Ryan Executive Director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) sent a letter to Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Director Dr. Robert R. Redfield urging the CDC to allocate a portion of the funds designated in the CARES Act Unemployment Extension (H.R.113) for high risk and under-served populations to the state of Colorado.

Director Ryan and Palacio highlight this action in their letter to the lawmakers and point out that the state is not waiting for the CDC to release these funds to begin the work of reaching these communities and added: “if granted, we will quickly direct the funds towards our goal to vaccinate all Coloradans, especially vulnerable populations.”

“We are proud to say that some of the first seniors in the state of Colorado to receive the vaccine, did so through our pop-up vaccination clinics administered by our community partners in the towns of Center, San Luis and in the City of Denver at Zion Baptist Church. Piloting these pop up community-based vaccine clinics has not only resulted in over 500 seniors receiving the vaccine close to their homes, but we have gained invaluable experience regarding how to execute these vaccine clinics, and are using this knowledge to scale up these efforts. Moving forward, we will be dedicating a portion of each week’s vaccine supply to enhance these efforts. These types of clinics are specifically tailored to serve areas with the lowest income and highest number of senior populations of color in the state. Likewise, it is our goal to reach 50% of communities ranked as such with pop-up clinics by February 28th,” the letter continues.

The work of equitable distribution, and therefore equitable health outcomes, must also include full and transparent data from our hospital systems and retail pharmacies, where over 50% of vaccines are administered each week. Therefore, we will be requiring these providers to report the age, zip code, and patient-volunteered race and ethnic data to the state, each week. As retail pharmacies are added to our statewide vaccine program, we have requested that our large pharmacy partners use their best efforts to double their staff qualified to administer vaccines in low income and communities of color throughout the state,” the letter concludes. 

CDPHE, Governor’s Office Update Black & Latino Caucuses on Vaccine & Request Support for Ongoing Efforts

Gov. Polis provides update on Colorado’s COVID-19 response & vaccination progress

DENVER – Today, Governor Jared Polis provided an update on Colorado’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the State’s efforts to vaccinate Coloradans. Governor Polis was joined by Dr. Kit Kieling, President & COO of Orderly Health. 

In an effort to continue making the free COVID-19 vaccine as accessible as possible, today Governor Polis signed an Executive Order ensuring that the vaccine is free for Coloradans, and insurance status will not be used to deny or deprioritize any patient from getting the vaccine. The state wants to ensure there are no barriers to accessing the vaccine. The executive order directs the Colorado Division of Insurance to enact a rule regarding rates for COVID-19 vaccine administration. 

“The vaccine is free and there should be no barriers to receiving it when that time comes,” said Governor Polis. “Vaccines are the path back towards the Colorado we all know and love, and to ensure that can happen as quickly and easily as possible, our State must make sure the vaccine is accessible to all.” 

“We should all be proud of Colorado for hitting our target goal of vaccinating the majority of those in Phase 1A, meaning that a majority of our State’s high-risk healthcare workers have received at least their first dose of the vaccine,” said Governor Polis. “This victory means that our front line healthcare workers who have worked day in and day out to care for COVID patients have the protection they need to continue their commendable work until all of Colorado is vaccinated. Our State has also made significant efforts towards vaccinating our seniors ages 70 and older, who are at the greatest risk of dying from COVID and they now become our top focus.”

Governor Polis provided an update on how Colorado businesses experiencing financial hardships due to the pandemic can receive the support they need. The Colorado Department of Local Affairs is continuing to manage the Small Business Relief Program. Through this $35 million program, local governments have been able to distribute grants to small businesses hurt by the pandemic. Small businesses that are interested but haven’t applied should reach out to their local government soon, as most applications are closing at the end of January. Visit for more information.

“Orderly Health received $130,000 in funding through the Paycheck Protection Program and with that, we took five full-time employees and expanded our company by hiring more Coloradans and creating a diverse talent pool,” saidDr. Kit Kieling, President & COO of Orderly Health. “Governor Polis, I appreciate the opportunity to share our experience and am thankful for the Paycheck Protection Program.” Orderly Health is a provider of a data management system that helps clients improve the accuracy of their healthcare data. 

Applications for the federal Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) reopened earlier this week. Colorado’s Office of Economic Development is working with the federal government to make sure our State’s businesses are getting access to these funds. Businesses can visit for more information on how to apply. 

View today’s presentation and press conference. 

Gov. Polis provides update on Colorado’s COVID-19 response & vaccination progress

Garfield County Public Health: Vaccine distribution currently focusing on those aged 70 and older locally and statewide

Garfield County Public Health, in partnership with Valley View Hospital and Grand River Health, will continue to follow the state priorities of vaccinating people 70 and older before any expansion to those 65 and older.

People that are 70+ in age will need to make appointments with local hospitals to receive the vaccine. Appointments are only being made as the vaccine is available.

Yesterday’s announcement by the federal government caused some confusion, but statewide and locally there is no change. We will continue with the state’s goal of vaccinating 70 percent of our 70 years and older population by February 28, 2021. 

Garfield County Public Health will continue to provide updates on the Garfield County COVID-19 vaccine page with current information as it comes in.

Governor Polis indicates that Colorado is not currently expanding its age criteria currently.

Garfield County Public Health: Vaccine distribution currently focusing on those aged 70 and older locally and statewide

Governor Polis statement on CDC’s recommendation to expand COVID-19 vaccine to include 65 year olds or older

DENVER – Governor Jared Polis today reiterated Colorado’s commitment to vaccinating 70% of the state’s residents who are 70 and older by February 28th, 2021 along with completing the vaccination of our healthcare workers and first responders. 

The state is reviewing the announcement from the Trump administration of their updated guidance as well as actively engaging the incoming Biden administration to understand how they will approach prioritization and supply flow. 

Colorado will not be making any changes to our vaccine program until we can get concrete details on supply quantities, timelines for receiving that supply and engaging our partners who are on the ground administering the vaccine. While the state is not making any changes today, the Polis administration is actively planning how we can scale up and expand eligibility in anticipation for receiving more supply of vaccines.  

“I am very excited with the announcement that states will be receiving more vaccines in the near term. Here in Colorado, we have a broad current eligible population of over 562,000 people over 70 years of age and based on data-driven goals of saving lives and ending the pandemic, protecting this vulnerable population will have the biggest impact. Our broad focus on vaccinating those over 70 has been one of the reasons that Colorado is one of the top states for the vaccine to be successfully administered,” said Governor Polis. 

The Governor agrees that risk-based criteria saves lives. The Polis administration hopes to announce by next week updated plans based on information we do not yet have on new supplies the state of Colorado will receive. Governor Polis remains hopeful that the quantity of vaccines in the state will allow for expansion of the age criteria within a few weeks.

Governor Polis statement on CDC’s recommendation to expand COVID-19 vaccine to include 65 year olds or older

Gov. Polis, health care providers provide update on state’s COVID-19 response, vaccine administration

DENVER – Today, Governor Jared Polis provided an update on Colorado’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing mass vaccination process. Governor Polis was also joined by Peter D. Banko, President & CEO Centura Health; Dr. Richard Zane, Chief Innovation Officer, UC Health and Chair of Emergency Medicine, CU School of Medicine; and John Santistevan, President & CEO, Salud Family Health Centers. 

“Right now, our top priority is to continue to be a national leader in ensuring vaccines are being rapidly distributed and put into the arms of as many Coloradans as possible,” said Governor Polis. “Partnerships with healthcare providers across the state, including those who joined us today, are one highly effective way Colorado will be able to vaccinate all Coloradans and finally beat this crisis. Every day, we are vaccinating more and more people age 70 and up and making notable progress towards ending the pandemic and returning to a normal way of life. But until the vaccine is widely distributed, we all must make an even greater effort to practice good social distancing including wearing masks and staying six feet away from others. We can end this, but to do that as quickly as possible, we must all stay committed in this fight.”

“Thank you, Governor Polis for your leadership during this time. Health systems including Centura Health are ready and capable of scaling our operations to vaccinate all those who need a vaccine. We are thrilled to partner with the State and other health providers to make mass vaccination possible across Colorado, ” said Peter D. Banko, President & CEO Centura Health. 

“We are beyond proud to vaccinate Colorado and we are prepared to do so. We are ready to put COVID-19 in our rearview mirror,” said Dr. Richard Zane, UCHealth Chief Innovation Officer and Chair of Emergency Medicine at the CU School of Medicine.

“We are stepping up to vaccinate as many people as possible as we can in the communities we serve. We will continue to be there for the state of Colorado and look forward to helping out in any way we can,” said John Santistevan, President & CEO Salud Family Health Centers. 

Colorado is currently expecting around 70,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses every week through January from the federal government. But the number of doses allocated to the state can change depending on what the federal government is able to provide Colorado during a given week. However, even with this uncertainty, one of the state’s top priorities is to vaccinate 70% of Coloradans ages 70 years and older by February 28. 

Governor Polis provided an update on a recent mass vaccination clinic held at Zion Baptist Church in the Whittier neighborhood. At Zion Baptist Church, 150 congregates ages 70 and older were vaccinated. Colorado will continue to search for similar venues like Zion Baptist Church so that Coloradans who might not have access to a medical facility can still get the vaccine. 

Governor Polis also amended and extended an executive order related to licensure requirements. The amendment removes permit and certification expiration date extensions that are no longer necessary. 

View today’s presentation and press conference.

Gov. Polis, health care providers provide update on state’s COVID-19 response, vaccine administration