DENVER (CBS4) – A new mass COVID-19 vaccination clinic opened up in Denver to anyone 65 years and over who wants a shot. The first patient to get a shot at the clinic is a trailblazing leader in the Denver community.
“It’s challenging to immunize over five million people,” Elbra Wedgeworth said.READ MORE: Cars Spun Out & Abandoned As Winter Storm Grips Denver Metro Area
Wedgeworth knows the struggle of getting healthcare services out to people in need. She’s fought years for it as a public servant.
If her name sounds familiar, it’s because she has served in the Denver City Council, Chair for the Downtown Denver Partnership and worked as Chief Officer of Government Relations at Denver Health. Yet, like others in the 65+ group, she’s had to wait.
“Elbra will always stand up for the people who need to be heard,” Robin Wittenstein, Denver Health CEO said.
Though Wedgeworth is technically retired, she’s not done fighting for people, especially for those in the Black and brown communities who have been hit hard by COVID-19.
“I understand the concern and hesitancy that people have with the vaccine, but I really think it’s up to me and others to be an example to say to save people’s lives. I’m encouraging you to get the vaccine,” Wedgeworth explained.
Currently, Wedgeworth is working with Gov. Jared Polis’ office and Denver Health to get vaccines out to underserved communities, but she was also instrumental in getting funding for Denver Health’s new Outpatient Medical Center, which can distribute vaccines in high volume.READ MORE: Businesses Near Convention Center Eager For Events: 'It's Our Livelihood'
“We’re doing thousands of vaccines each week,” Wittenstein said.
“I think you can see that the people who are here today, that it was needed, and we needed to take it to the next level,” Wedgeworth added.
For all her work, Wedgeworth will be honored with a room on the 5th floor.
“For a kid that grew up in the Five Points neighborhood and now to be in this building, it’s kind of surreal,” Wedgeworth added.
This Tuesday however, she was just one of many who were able to finally get a life-saving shot.
A mass vaccination event is planned for Denver Public School teachers this weekend.MORE NEWS: Union Organizing JBS Mass Vaccination Event: 'It's About Time They Are Prioritized'