CDPHE reminds Coloradans to minimize COVID-19 transmission during holiday celebrations

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CDPHE encourages Coloradans to show they are thankful for healthcare works by getting vaccinated or boosted

STATEWIDE (Nov. 24, 2021) — As Coloradans prepare to come together with friends and family to celebrate the holidays, CDPHE would like to remind everyone to take steps to celebrate safely and minimize disease transmission while Colorado remains in a period with high case and hospitalization rates. This year, we are fortunate to have the benefit of vaccines, and more than 81% of all adults in Colorado have already received a first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, but it is important to also follow other public health recommendations and protocols to help ensure continuing hospital capacity for all Coloradans who may need to access care. 

“Health care workers across Colorado have been on the front lines doing heroic and tireless work to combat the COVID-19 pandemic for more than 20 months now. This Thanksgiving, let’s make sure it’s not thankless by showing our gratitude for these consummate professionals,” said Dr. Eric France, chief medical officer, CDPHE. “Hospital are busier than at any other point in the pandemic, and we all owe it to health care workers and to our communities to do our part. Let’s look out for one another and be thankful for those who help protect us by getting vaccinated, getting a booster dose when it’s time, and following best practices for avoiding disease transmission this holiday weekend.”

Getting a safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine is the single best way to prevent the spread of the virus. Vaccines are highly effective at preventing severe symptoms and hospitalization, but science shows now that immunity from the vaccine does wane. With waning immunity, vaccinated people can spread COVID-19 and non-vaccinated people and other high-risk individuals are at particular risk. Adults 18 and older who received their second dose of Pfizer or Moderna at least six months ago or received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine at least two months ago should get booster doses to stay protected. You can get any type of vaccine for your booster dose. It doesn't have to be the same type as the vaccine you already received.

The state has continued to expand clinics to meet demand for COVID-19 vaccines and booster doses, including an expansion of three community vaccine sites to administer additional doses — Chapel Hills Mall (1710 Briargate Blvd, Colorado Springs, CO 80920), Douglas County Fairgrounds (500 Fairgrounds Road, Castle Rock, CO 80104), and the Pueblo Mall (3201 Dillon Drive, Pueblo, CO 81008) will begin offering increased capacity of up to 1,000 doses per day Friday-Sunday beginning this weekend. Advance appointments are available and encouraged.

Earlier this month, CDPHE released holiday guidance that recommends the following for the holiday season:

  • Plan a gathering where everyone over the age of 5 has been vaccinated. 

  • Stay home if you are displaying symptoms of COVID-19, are positive for COVID-19, or have had recent close contact with someone with COVID-19. 

  • Wear a mask and practice physical distancing while shopping. If you can, use curbside pick up for groceries.

  • Plan your shopping list so you can get everything done in a single trip. Going in a single trip not only saves you precious time; it also helps the environment and decreases your exposure to COVID-19.

  • Ask your guests to test for COVID-19 before the gathering. There are free community testing sites all across Colorado. 

  • Consider hosting a smaller, shorter, outdoor gathering. Outdoor events are generally safer than indoor events; smaller groups are generally safer than larger groups; and shorter gatherings are generally safer than longer gatherings.

  • Keep a list of guests and their contact information so they can be notified quickly in the event of a COVID-19 exposure.

  • If gathering indoors, improve ventilation by opening windows and doors (if it’s safe to do so) or running your heat, AC, or an air purifier.

  • Additional recommendations and guidance are available from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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