Coronavirus

Denver Neighborhoods and Groups With Lowest COVID Vaccination Rates Now

A bird's eye view of southeast Denver.
A bird's eye view of southeast Denver. YouTube
Denver has one of the most admirable COVID-19 vaccination rates in Colorado, with 83 percent of eligible residents estimated to have received at least one dose and 76.8 percent fully immunized as of today, October 8, according to the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment's vaccine data dashboard. But there remain troubling gaps for entire neighborhoods, as well as among racial and ethnic groups that have historically struggled when it comes to health equity.

Throughout the pandemic, public-health officials in Denver have carefully tracked cases, hospitalizations and deaths related to the disease. But right now, this information isn't publicly available. According to the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment, new dashboards are being built with a goal of having them online by month's end. The COVID-19 vaccine summary page created by Denver Health remains accessible, however, and statistics updated after 6:30 p.m. October 7 offer immunization data for all 64 neighborhoods in the city.

Many of these areas have performed spectacularly well from an inoculation perspective. Three neighborhoods (DIA, Indian Creek, Lowry Field) have a one-dose vaccination rate of 100 percent, and nine others (Country Club, Central Park, Cory-Merrill, Overland, Hale, Washington Park, Berkeley, North Park Hill and South Park Hill) are at 90 percent or above.

But the rate in eight other neighborhoods is below 70 percent, with two in the low 50 percent range — and many have made only marginal progress in nearly two months, judging from our August 20 post on this subject.


See the current rundown below, complete with references to the rates of those cited in our previous report. Note that the rate for Auraria is now 10 percent lower than it was in August, presumably because returning college students have now been included in the mix.
Auraria
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 50 percent (60 percent on August 20)

Kennedy
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 51 percent (47 percent on August 20

Goldsmith
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 60 percent (56 percent on August 20)

Sun Valley
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 65 percent (56 percent on August 20)

Marston
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 66 percent (63 percent on August 20)

Bear Valley
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 69 percent (65 percent on August 20)

East Colfax
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 69 percent (66 percent on August 20)

West Colfax
Percentage of population with at least one COVID-19 vaccine: 69 percent (65 percent on August 20)
The page also includes the following graph tracking vaccination by age and race/ethnicity:
Vaccination rates for children between the ages of twelve and seventeen, the youngest group currently approved for immunization (though kids as young as five are expected to get the go-ahead in the coming weeks), are at 100 percent for white Denver residents, but much lower for all other ethnicities: 38.4 percent for American Indian, 40.6 percent for Asian/Pacific Islander, 42.1 percent for Black and 56.1 percent for Latino or Hispanic.

Moreover, rates for Denver residents in these ethnic categories are significantly lower than those for whites in almost every age group. For Latinos and Hispanics, the top rate is a lackluster 60.6 percent for those 65 and older, and only 45.6 percent of those between thirty and 49 have gotten vaccinated. Other troubling rates include the categories of Black residents between eighteen and 29 (49.6 percent) and American Indians over 65 (54.6 percent).

Throughout the pandemic, the damage wreaked by COVID-19 has disproportionately impacted people of color. More than eighteen months later, that's still true even in a city with vaccination rates as high as those in Denver.
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Michael Roberts has written for Westword since October 1990, serving stints as music editor and media columnist. He currently covers everything from breaking news and politics to sports and stories that defy categorization.
Contact: Michael Roberts