The United States Vice President, Harris has commended the Colorado health workers for their heroic work throughout the period pandemic.
Expressing her appreciation via teleconference on Tuesday March 16, 2021, Haris thanked the Lieutenant Governor Primavera, Governor Jared Polis for their leadership.
She said, “The President and I have been watching from afar and now close up, and your leadership has been extraordinary through these extremely difficult days and through this crisis.”
She added, “And so I am here in Colorado, in the great state of Colorado — back here to, one, thank you for your leadership, to thank John Santistevan and Chief Nurse Rosy Mendoza for all the courageous work that you have been doing. You have not given up. You are giving people hope. You are protecting people.”
She appreciated the work they are doing at the Salud clinic. “I have read about it, I’ve heard about it. And it is about reaching out, knowing that if we really are going to live the spirit of love thy neighbor.”
“We must be in the community; we must be with the people; we must create spaces where people trust that when they go there, they will be treated with dignity and respect. And you are doing that work,” the VP said.
Harris also stated that the Diden administration is very excited about all of the work that “can happen that will build on what you’ve been doing because of the American Rescue Plan”.
Harris disclosed that part of the work of that plan is to make sure that resources are put into states, local governments and get the resources to “make sure we get shots in all arms”.
“As you know, by the end of May, we believe we will have enough vaccines to vaccinate the entire American people. But it will be the work that you have been doing here that makes that actually happen.
“But in Colorado, you know, you’ve looked at over 400,000 infections, over 6,000 deaths. And the tragedy in terms of the loss of life, the loss of jobs because of the economic crisis that resulted from this pandemic is extraordinary,” Harris said.
“I know and I’m going to be visiting with small businesses here in Denver and in Colorado one in three have closed. And the sooner we can get everyone vaccinated, the closer we will be to back to what we would recognize as normal.
“And so we are here to thank you, to let you know that through the American Rescue Plan, we are going to make sure that everyone gets those vaccines,” she added.
She said the administration is also partnering with 260 pharmacies, 1,200 community health clinics to enable the people to be able to go to the place they are familiar with.
According to the vice president, a lot of the pharmacies are in the grocery store where they shop, the community health clinics where they otherwise get medical care that they trust.
“So this is the work that the President and I are doing. And, again, here in Colorado to thank you for the work that you all are doing on the ground. We are in this together. I know, in Colorado, there have been over 1.9 million vaccinations and that you’re expanding the number of folks who can get the vaccines.
“This is also about getting our kids back in school, getting our businesses back open, and making sure that we, as leaders, protect the health and wellbeing of the American people and the residents of our community,” she concluded.
Welcoming the vice president to Colorado, John Santistevan, President and CEO Salud Health Centers, said,” We’d like to welcome you. You know, Colorado — we’re famous for our snow, so we wanted to make sure there was some snow on the ground when you guys got here.”
He informed the vice president about the achievement of the clinic.
Santistevan said, “Last year, we saw 84,000 patients and provided 280,000 visits. And over those 50 years, we saw over 1.7 million individuals and provided over 7 million visits. So that was really fantastic.
“So, you know, as you know, Salud and other community health centers across this country have been on the frontlines battling the COVID pandemic. So we are now dedicated to helping vaccine vulnerable populations and individuals of color.”
He stated that Salud is one of the first 25 health centers across this country chosen to participate in the health center COVID-19 vaccine program.