Several hospitals and COVID-19 vaccination sites across Colorado are closing or rescheduling weekend appointments because of the arrival of an anticipated March 13 winter storm.
The northern Front Range is forecast to get as much as two feet of snow. The foothills could get between two and four feet. The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment has urged vaccine providers to contact individuals who scheduled appointments for Friday night, March 12, through Sunday to let them know how they will be notified of cancelations.
"Our top priority is ensuring everyone stays safe," wrote a CDPHE spokesperson in an email.
The state says people who are scheduled to get a shot but cannot make it because of adverse weather should call their provider with as much advance notice as possible to reschedule.
Officials expect vaccine providers to "plan carefully based on their allocations and to do all they can to prevent any leftover doses." CDPHE said the storm will not interrupt the state's shipments of new COVID-19 vaccine doses.
The city of Denver will only keep one clinic open at the Bear Valley Library on Sunday. UCHealth is calling 2,500 people to reschedule appointments, hospital officials said. Health ONE will close the Medical Center of Aurora and the Sky Ridge Medical Center in Lone Tree. It plans to reschedule about 1,000 appointments. Kaiser Permanente officials said they are postponing weekend vaccination clinics, which will affect about 10,000 people.
SCL Health is also closing its COVID-19 vaccine clinics in the Denver area, including Saint Joseph Hospital, on Saturday and Sunday and reaching out to patients via phone and email.
Centura Health currently has no vaccine appointments scheduled for this weekend, according to a spokesperson. The hospital system moved all appointments up to Wednesday and Thursday in order to finish before the storm. A mass vaccination event for second doses was scheduled for Saturday at the Broadmoor World Arena in Colorado Springs, but those appointments have been rescheduled for Tuesday.
Center for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines say the second dose of the Moderna and Pfizer COVID-19 vaccines may be provided up to six weeks after the first dose. UCHealth officials said this delay will not affect the overall effectiveness of the vaccination.
Note: This is not a comprehensive list of clinics' plans for the stormy weekend. Anyone with an appointment should check directly with their provider for more information.