Vaccine first doses scarce in the YC

Distribution of the COVID-19 Moderna vaccination in Yuma County started out fairly well at the end of 2020.
Progress continued to be made in the following weeks medical personnel, frontline responders, those 70 and older and others received the first and second doses in a timely manner.
However, it has become more difficult as the as time goes by in securing first doses for those in the next phases.
The vaccination data dashboard on the Northeast Colorado Health Department website,, showed as of March 9 that 1,903 Yuma County residents had been immunized with at least one dose, with 1,373 immunized with two doses.
Yuma County’s population is 10,063.
However, first dose shots have dried up in Yuma County for the most part.
Beth Saxton, RN-CEO of Yuma District Hospital and Clinics, said the facility has not received first-dose vaccines for the past few weeks.
Jennifer Kramer, CCO of Wray Community District Hospital, reported that all orders for first doses have been denied for over a month.
Both facilities submit weekly orders for the vaccine. Both are receiving doses for the second shot.
“I believe the biggest challenge we are having is not having enough vaccines to serve everyone wishing to get their vaccine,” Kramer said in an email. “Throughout February and March, we have only been allotted does to give people the second doses they need.”
She added that sometimes there are enough doses left over to do some first doses, “but not nearly as much as we wish we could.”
Saxton said that, according to phone conferences with the CDPHE and NCHD, what Yuma County receives in vaccinations comes down to what the state receives from the federal government. What the state receives is distributed to counties based on population, which are then distributed to “vaccine providers.”
“So, what may seem like a large volume of vaccine coming in to the State, actually ends up being much smaller distributed volumes and can equate to no delivery, once the vaccine is actually parsed out to all requesting Colorado designated vaccine providers,” she explained in an email.
Saxton said YDH & C currently has well over 100 people on the list waiting for an appointment. She noted they have the same issue as Wray, needing to get the vaccine in order to meet that need. Vaccine clinics will be set up as soon as the shots are received.
“It truly is as simple as supply and demand,” Saxton said. “At this time, Yuma County does not have the supply to meet the demand for those wishing to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.”
The NCHD’s vaccination data dashboard shows that of those who have received a shot, 86 percent are white, and 4.73 percent are Hispanic, though Yuma County does have a significant Hispanic community.
Kramer reported that number is going up. “Now that phase 1B.3 is open and includes agriculture workers, those 16 and over with two or more chronic diseases, and everyone 60 and over, we are seeing a big increase in the number of Hispanic people getting vaccinated.” She said that last week that 55 percent of first dose vaccines were given to Hispanics.
Saxton agreed, adding that the Yuma facility also has reached out to the Rural Community Resource Center in an effort to obtain ideas and the opportunity to colloborate.