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A look at Colorado's effort to make COVID vaccines more accessible, one year later

A man in a blue hard hat gives the camera thumbs up after a woman with masks and gloves put a shot in his right arm
Alex McIntyre
The Greeley Tribune pool photo
JBS employee Enrique Estrada, right, flashes a thumbs-up to the media after receiving his first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine from Kaiser Permanente medical assistant Liz Negron, left, during a two-day COVID-19 vaccination clinic inside the JBS plant in Greeley on March 5, 2021.

The first COVID-19 vaccines became available to Coloradans one year ago, on Dec. 14, 2020. The rollout initially focused on those who were most at-risk, like older adults and healthcare workers, and gradually expanded over the next few months to phase in more people.

But even with the vaccine broadly available, not everyone wanted to get it, nor was it easily accessible to all. Barriers to access, as well as a lack of trust in the vaccine, were noted among some communities of color. To build access and trust and to help dispel misinformation, a group of medical leaders created the Colorado Vaccine Equity Task Force.

For more on what the group has accomplished over the course of the year, we spoke with one of its members, Dr. Ozzie Grenardo, chief diversity and inclusion officer at Centura Health.

As the host of KUNC’s new program and podcast In the NoCo, I work closely with our producers and reporters to bring context and diverse perspectives to the important issues of the day. Northern Colorado is such a diverse and growing region, brimming with history, culture, music, education, civic engagement, and amazing outdoor recreation. I love finding the stories and voices that reflect what makes NoCo such an extraordinary place to live.
As a producer for Colorado Edition, I pitch segment ideas, pre-interview guests, craft scripts and cut audio. I also write tweets, build web posts and occasionally host.