Provided the state’s rising coronavirus case rates, Gov. Jared Polis tried to argue that the entire state of Colorado is at increased risk of exposure to COVID-19, making them eligible for a vaccine booster dose if two months have passed since receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine or six months have passed since finishing the Pfizer or Moderna vaccination series. 

Colorado Governor Has Made All Adults Eligible For A Coronavirus Booster

Booster doses are now only suggested for elderly individuals, those with certain pre-existing diseases that put them at higher risk, and adults who live or work in high-risk environments, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Colorado Governor Has Made All Adults Eligible For A Coronavirus Booster

Polis compared the whole state of Colorado to a high-risk environment in another executive order.

The governor of Colorado issued an executive order on Thursday that makes all individuals in the state eligible for a coronavirus vaccination booster injection — a White House aim that met a snag when senior federal health organizations refused to endorse the strategy.

The illness has spread so far across Colorado, Polis said in his executive order, all Coloradans who are 18 years of age and older are at high risk and qualify for a booster vaccine. He strongly encourages all Coloradans aged 18 and up to receive a COVID-19 vaccination booster six months after having the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, and two months after receiving the Johnson & Johnson Janssen vaccine. 

Given the severity of the current epidemic across the state, he strongly encourages all Coloradans who are eligible and have not yet received a vaccination to do so as soon as possible.

The directive comes just days after Colorado’s top medical officer advised Coloradans to obtain coronavirus vaccine booster doses, claiming that the whole state is living in a high-risk environment due to current COVID-19 rates. According to the Colorado Department of Public Health, one out of every 48 Coloradans is infectious.

CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky said during a White House coronavirus briefing on Wednesday that the FDA is looking at the date and reviewing whether to make the wider adult population eligible for a booster after a panel of experts rejected it last month. 

However, the administration’s priority remains to vaccinate the unvaccinated, those who are already due for a booster, and youngsters aged 5 to 11 who have recently become eligible for their first doses.

The vaccination continues to protect against severe sickness and hospitalization, but it may allow people to have mild disease, leading to continued transmission, said Dr. Eric France, chief medical officer for the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. Coloradans – particularly unvaccinated Coloradans – are at greater risk of contracting the virus due to the continued transmission. The epidemic is still raging, as much as they would prefer it to be finished.