Colorado pharmacies planning out appointment-based COVID-19 vaccine process


DENVER (KDVR) — Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) placed the state’s first order COVID-19 vaccine order Thursday with the CDC for 46,800 doses of the Pfizer vaccine in anticipation of the Food and Drug Administration’s Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). 

Regular vaccine allocation from the federal government will be based on the size of Colorado’s total population and the quantity of ready-to-ship doses from the manufacturer. 

Colorado makes up 1.69% of the U.S. population, so the state expects 1.69% of the available vaccine.

FOX31 has learned that King Soopers and City Market will carry the vaccine at all 147 pharmacy locations in the state.

Safeway, CVS and Walgreens will play a roll as well.

With two different vaccines each requiring two doses each, there’s an added layer of planning for our pharmacies and COVID-19 coordinators.

“We want to be really careful with what people are getting because they are not interchangeable,” Tri-County Health COVID-19 Vaccine Coordinator Kaitlin Wolff said. 

“We want to ensure if someone is getting a Pfizer, their second dose is Pfizer and if someone gets Moderna, their second dose is Moderna,” Director of Pharmacy Operations for Safeway and Alberts Nikki Price said, adding “We can do that by holding appointment-based clinics in our stores.”

Demand and availability of the vaccine will dictate more of the layout of what administering will look like at our local pharmacies, but Price says their pharmacies will definitely use appointments.

“There could be outside events, it could be clinics within in our store, it will defiantly be within our normal workflow too just like we do flu shots,” she said. 

Price also told FOX31 the goal is to get the vaccine in all 98 pharmacies for phase two of the state’s vaccine administration plan. That includes essential workers, higher risk individuals and individuals in congregate housing.

Currently, officials with Safeway say the company has signed provider agreements for 19 stores thus far in Larimer, Boulder, Broomfield, Tri-County, Jeffco, Denver, El Paso, Summit, Pueblo and La Plata counties. 

Problem Solvers asked Wolff if an individual receives the first dose, if they will be likely to get the second dose on time. 

“The broad intention is yes, if we get x number of doses in the state, then most of those allocations should be divided by two because that’s the number of people we need to cover,” Wolff said. 

Wolff told FOX21, another factor in consideration is where individuals will be able to sign up for vaccines. 

“Regionally and state wide, we’re all really working for a public health jurisdiction level to say it will be both,” she said, adding “If there’s enough go around for estimated state populations, it shouldn’t matter if you get vaccinated where you work or live. If there’s any specifications, we’ll clarify.”

Tri-County Health Department has already received reports in various communities for fraudulence products for sale. Wolff says there shouldn’t be cost to you personally for getting a vaccine. A pharmacy or clinic may charge your insurance, but the person getting the vaccine should not have to pay anything out of pocket. 

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