DENVER — The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) has collaborated with local public health agencies to prepare health care facilities to receive the COVID-19 vaccine and distribute them.
The CDPHE said it has identified places across the state with ultra-low temperature freezers to receive the first shipment of the Pfizer vaccine. These locations are specialized and can store, monitor and handle vaccines in temperatures -60 to -80 degrees Celsius. The locations were also willing to redistribute vaccines to other providers in their regions. While choosing these locations, the state also considered transportation logistics in winter conditions.
The first shipment will be 46,800 doses of the Pfizer vaccine. The second shipment will be 95,600 of the Moderna vaccine.
The vaccines will be distributed on a prioritized basis, with those highest at risk for contracting the virus receiving the vaccine first.
Gov. Jared Polis in a news conference Friday urged Coloradans to continue social distancing and mask-wearing through the holidays, even with vaccine distribution getting underway. Polis said the vaccine is not expected to provide full protection from the virus until after a second dose, spaced several weeks after the first.
"When you get the vaccine, you're 50 yards away from the finish of a marathon," Polis said.
The first two shipments of vaccine will be allocated to the following locations: