Gov. Jared Polis has urged the Biden administration to “ramp up vaccine distribution right away” to help overcome the failures of the Trump administration’s COVID-19 vaccine rollout.
Colorado needs more vaccines, he said, as the state and providers continue to exhaust the supply allocated by the federal government.
“Vaccines in Colorado are not sitting in a warehouse or on a shelf and we need more vaccines immediately to protect our most vulnerable residents over the age of 70 and ultimately to end this horrible pandemic,” Polis said.
“It’s well known by now that the Trump administration failed Americans in many aspects of the COVID vaccine rollout and I continue to urge our federal partners and the new Biden administration in Washington to ramp up vaccine distribution right away.
“Colorado is ready to immediately use three to four times as many vaccines as we are currently getting each week right away. The sooner Colorado gets more vaccines, the quicker we can get them into arms, and the faster we can help our small businesses and economy build back stronger.
"We’re ready and welcome renewed federal assistance to get the job done.”
Colorado has received a total of 376,920 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine as of Jan. 24, including 147,420 Pfizer first doses and 229,500 Moderna first doses. The state has also received 217,520 second doses, including 88,920 Pfizer doses and 128,600 Moderna doses.
Colorado expects 42,120 first doses and 16,380 second doses from Pfizer next week; and 38,170 first doses and 33,200 second doses from Moderna next week.
Colorado has administered 458,441 of the vaccine as of 9 a.m. Jan. 25 — 375,782 first doses and 82,659 second doses.
Polis said his administration has been focused on distributing the COVID-19 vaccine in a way that is equitable, saves the most lives, and ends the public health crisis brought on by the COVID-19 virus as soon as possible.
Colorado is dependent on the federal government for the state’s weekly supply of the COVID-19 vaccine.
COLORADO ADVISOR TO JOIN BIDEN ADMINISTRATION
The Polis administration later announced that Kacey Wulff, senior advisor for COVID-19 Response, Resilience, and Recovery, will join the Biden administration.
“Kacey has answered the call of duty and has been instrumental in the state’s response to the unique challenges created by the COVID-19 pandemic,” Polis said in the announcement. “We will miss her passion and problem-solving skills and wish Kacey well as she embarks on this new challenge.
“Kacey’s recruitment to the Biden administration is a reflection of Colorado’s successes in responding to the COVID pandemic. Our state and country will be better served with Kacey’s continued involvement in the response to the pandemic at the federal level.”
“Kacey can navigate stakeholding, serve as a public health expert, and develop policy,” said Jill Hunsaker Ryan, executive director of the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. "She’s an ‘all of the above’ type of public servant. She does it all with grace and while advocating for Coloradans and their wellbeing. Colorado’s loss is our nation’s gain."
“I am excited about this new endeavor," Wulff said, "and will bring the lessons forged by Colorado to help our country build back stronger than before the pandemic."
Wulff begins her position as the chief of staff in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response in the Department of Health and Human Services immediately. ASPR collaborates with hospitals, healthcare coalitions, biotech firms, community members, state, local, tribal, and territorial governments, and other partners across the country to improve readiness and response capabilities.