Colorado will move to Phase 2 of the COVID-19 vaccination schedule Friday.

Governor Jared Polis made the announcement today that the state is ready to move to vaccinations for the general public ages 16 and older.  

The shift to Phase 2 comes earlier than the anticipated mid-April target set when Phase 1.4 went into effect March 19.

“This welcomed announcement is a sign that we are closer to getting our lives back after more than a year of sacrifices.  However, the key to this is full vaccination,” Andrea Carlstrom, Chaffee County Public Health director and local COVID-19 incident commander wrote in a press release. 

She said, “If ever there was a time to consider getting fully vaccinated, it’s now. While our state and local COVID-19 incidence, hospitalizations and deaths have plateaued, we are seeing pockets of resurgence in other counties, some of which have moved to a less protective environment prematurely.”  

“In addition,” said Carlstrom, “we have witnessed plenty of out of county and state visitors take advantage of the ease getting a vaccine is in our county.  Our intent is to ensure that everyone age 16 and older in Chaffee County gets vaccinated as soon as possible, so registering when there are clinics scheduled and appointments available with any local provider is critical.” 

Chaffee County Public Health has available appointments for the general public at this Friday’s vaccination clinic at the Chaffee County Fairgrounds, 10165 CR 120 in Salida.  

Pfizer, which is authorized for ages 16 and older will be the vaccine distributed.  

People registering must be able to return for the second dose on April 23.  

The Moderna and Johnson & Johnson (Janssen) vaccines are authorized only for ages 18 and older, so it is important to know which vaccine will be given ahead of time for those younger that 18 according to Chaffee County Public Health.  

In the upcoming days, the general public in Chaffee County should see additional vaccination clinics and appointments by numerous providers to meet local demand.  

Large-scale vaccination sites are also scheduled throughout the state, including El Paso and Pueblo counties.

While the vaccination rates are increasing as the new phase is rolled out, Chaffee County cautions it is imperative to continuing to wear a mask, physical distance, and stay home when symptomatic.

Chaffee County’s pandemic total of cases stands at 1,038 as of Monday, of which 17 were reported in the last two weeks. The county’s current two week positivity rate was at 1.7 percent.

To register for a COVID-19 vaccine appointment visit www.chaffeecounty.rsvpify.com.

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