Delta, CO (December 14, 2020) – Delta County Memorial Hospital (DCMH) announced today that they are preparing to administer the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, which was authorized for emergency use by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) under an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) on December 11, 2020, to frontline health care workers starting as early as next week.
DCMH is also planning to administer the Moderna vaccine, assuming it is approved by the FDA in the coming weeks.
The first delivery of the Pfizer vaccine will provide 46,800 vaccine doses to Colorado and DCMH expects to receive roughly 330 doses of the vaccine for its employees.
“The approval of the Pfizer vaccine means that we can start protecting our health care workers who have been on the frontlines since the beginning of the pandemic and who are directly exposed to COVID-19 as part of their job,” said Jody Roeber, Senior Vice President and Chief Clinical Officer for DCMH. “We plan to begin administering the vaccine as soon as it’s available.”
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDPHE) plans to release the vaccine in three phases with the first phase going to the highest-risk health care workers who have direct contact with COVID-19 patients and long-term care facility staff and residents.
“The Pfizer vaccine is a two-dose vaccine with the second dose given 21 days after the first dosage,” said Jessica Walters, Registered Nurse and Infection Control for DCMH. “Currently, Pfizer is reporting that its vaccine is around 95% effective. We know that there are some reported side effects for the vaccine as part of the body’s process of building immunity. We will be monitoring those receiving the vaccine closely to ensure the overall safety and well-being of our staff.”
For the first phase, the CDPHE is prioritizing the health care workers at the highest risk of exposure and Coloradans who are most at risk of getting severely sick from COVID-19, as well as long-term care facility staff and residents. CDPHE says this is the best way to slow the spread of the pandemic.
The second part of phase one is for moderate-risk health care workers and all first responders with less direct contact with COVID-19 patients.
Phase two, anticipated in spring 2021, is for higher-risk individuals 65 years or younger or those with diseases that are associated with more severe COVID infection, and essential workers with frequent public interactions, such as teachers and grocery store clerks. Phase three is estimated to happen in summer 2021 and will make the vaccine available for the remainder of the general public.
“Our Hospital is doing this to keep our health care heroes safe as they continue to work on the frontlines of the pandemic,” said Roeber. “We continue to put our patients and community members first and will do everything that we can to keep everyone safe and healthy.”
More information on the vaccine, timelines of vaccine allocation, and other resources can be found online at covid19.colorado.gov/vaccine
You can also visit the DCMH COVID-19 Vaccination Information Page.