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Colorado governor, Aurora mayor urge residents to get COVID vaccine booster shots

Gov. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) and Mayor Mike Coffman (R-Aurora) spoke Thursday morning from a vaccination site.

AURORA, Colo. — Gov. Jared Polis (D-Colo.) and Mayor Mike Coffman (R-Aurora) urged residents to get vaccinated while speaking at the Aurora Municipal Center vaccination site on Thursday.

Polis said that only 176 of the 1,227 COVID-19 patients currently hospitalized in the state are vaccinated, which is about 14%. 

He also said that initial data indicate three doses are needed to have a high-level of protection against the omicron variant.

Overall, Coloradans who have received a booster dose are 47 times less likely to be hospitalized than unvaccinated residents, according to Polis.

About 81% of Coloradans have received at least one dose of a COVID vaccine, and Polis said Colorado is among the top 10 states with about 26% of children ages 5 to 11 who have received at least one dose.

"We now face a new threat with the omicron variant," Polis said. "We have five cases of omicron confirmed, but it's only a matter of time until it becomes the prevalent variant here in Colorado, as it has in every other place it's been."

He also said the state believes it has confirmed the first case of community spread involving the omicron variant.

There are currently nine larger community vaccination sites across the state, and appointments can be made but are not required. More information can be found on the state's website.

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Exactly one year after the first Coloradans received COVID-19 vaccinations, Colorado Department of Public Health (CDPHE) reports the state surpassed 10,000 deaths due to COVID on Tuesday.

CDPHE also reported the state's third confirmed case of the omicron variant on Tuesday. The case involving a Jefferson County woman was detected through routine testing, and the state lab confirmed through genome sequencing.

On Dec. 2, Colorado's first case of the omicron variant was detected in Arapahoe County. A second case was found a day later in Boulder. 

Colorado was the third state to detect the omicron variant.

RELATED: Colorado reports 3rd omicron case as state surpasses 10,000 deaths

RELATED: One year ago, COVID vaccines arrived in Colorado

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