State responds to Coloradans struggling to book boosters before Thanksgiving

COVID-19 Vaccine

DENVER (KDVR) — Viewers are coming to the FOX31 Problem Solvers for help with booking a COVID-19 booster shot before the Thanksgiving holiday.

Michael Britton and his wife have been searching for three weeks for a booster and can’t seem to get an appointment.

“We’ve reached out to King Soopers, Safeway, Walgreens,” Britton said. “We’ve expanded our search and we’re coming up blank. There’s nothing nothing within 20 miles of us and my wife’s asthmatic so we’re concerned.”

In Larimer County, a viewer said she and her partner received emails that the appointments they had booked for vaccines are now canceled due to an unexpected delay in the county’s vaccine supply.

Problem Solvers reached out to both Larimer County and the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment.

A spokesperson form Larimer County shared the following statement: 

There was a delay in receiving some vaccine so we’re rescheduling some folks, but there is not a shortage of vaccine. We will get back to everyone tomorrow who needs to be rescheduled due to the delay in getting a shipment. We have more than doubled the number of appointments that we have available since boosters and pediatric vaccines have come online, as well as added staff to meet the high demand. We are booked out through most of next week and we have heard that other vaccine providers in the area are booked out as well. We do open some slots throughout the week as we can or if there are cancellations. 

CDPHE shared the following statement:

There are many options to receive a booster vaccine. There are currently more than 1,700 vaccine provider locations in the state. Right now, inventory levels show providers have about 842,000 doses of the adult COVID vaccine and we do not have any supply issues nationally. People can also get their booster at any of our pediatric events, as well as any of the mobile vaccination buses. Right now, there are no plans to relaunch mass vaccination sites.

Questions regarding vaccine supply at retail pharmacies and local public health agencies, such as Larimer County, should be directed to those organizations. On November 10, we also distributed a letter to all enrolled COVID vaccine providers clarifying the recommendation to offer booster doses to anyone in the state who is 18 years or older and due for their booster dose given the high rate of disease transmission currently being observed in the state. In that letter, we urged all COVID vaccine providers to offer boosters to all persons 18 or older as soon as possible if the appropriate duration has passed since their initial vaccine series. We also highlighted the amended Public Health Order 21-01 which requires all COVID vaccine providers to administer booster doses to individuals who self-attest to being eligible. Nobody should be turned away from receiving a booster dose, anywhere. If individuals are being denied booster doses, we ask them to complete our Provider Complaint Form so that we can perform direct outreach and education to the vaccine provider in question. 

The most protective measures Coloradans can take to protect those who are more at-risk and to reduce community spread are getting vaccinated, getting a booster if over 18 and 6 months past their initial series,  and following other public health recommendations like choosing to wear a mask indoors in public places, avoiding large gatherings, washing your hands, and staying home when you are sick. Anyone, regardless of vaccination status, who is experiencing symptoms should get tested immediately and isolate.

The FOX31 Problem Solvers reached out to local hospitals as well. 

UCHealth states it has plenty of available appointments for both booster doses and for first dose appointments. 

Those interested can go to www.uchealth.org/covidvaccine for more information. From there, people will need to log into My Health Connection to see a list of available appointment times. Anyone can create an account and schedule an appointment. They do not need to be a current UCHealth patient.

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