Over 90K doses administered to county residents
As of Thursday, 90,754 doses have been administered to Nevada County residents, according to the state’s COVID-19 Vaccine Dashboard.
“Certainly there’s an effect, and we’ve seen a decline in cases, although a slight uptick in particular on the eastern side over the last week or so,” said Nevada County Director of Health and Human Services Ryan Gruver on the effect of local vaccination progress in a Q&A Wednesday. “But, definitely we’re in a lot better place than we were a few months ago in terms of cases, and so feeling a lot better moving into June 15.”
The state has announced June 15 as the date businesses and activities will be permitted to “return to usual operations,” lifting the restrictions implemented last year through the color-coded Blueprint for a Safer Economy tier system.
Following the closure of a vaccine clinic opened by the county last month at Sierra College’s Grass Valley campus due to low utilization, county Deputy Public Health Officer Dr. Glennah Trochet said at Wednesday’s Q&A that the county’s Whispering Pines clinic has expanded its hours to include not only weekdays but Saturday mornings, in addition to opening to walk-ins.
According to Trochet, the Whispering Pines clinic’s staff have recently reported an average of 100 doses administered per day.
“So, that’s still a fairly good clip, and we certainly want to keep it open as long as they can stay busy,” said Trochet.
Gruver explained that, relative to the now-closed clinic which was formerly located at Sierra College and provided by the state with a set minimum capacity of 210 doses per day, the Whispering Pines clinic “is more scalable,” allowing for a smaller output of doses per day while avoiding waste.
He said that, while the vaccination rate will at some point decline to the point where it will no longer make sense to continue maintaining a mass vaccination pod, there are no immediate plans to close.
“We’re also offering a choice of vaccine,” said Gruver on vaccine accessibility through the county clinic. “In the beginning, when there was scarcity, that wasn’t really an option. But, now, you have the ability to come in and talk to one of our professionals about what vaccine you feel may be right for you.”
COMPARING VACCINATION RATES
As of this week, according to the state’s data on vaccination status by age, 55.4% of Nevada County residents 65 and older are fully vaccinated, and 8.9% are partially vaccinated.
Now belonging to the age group with the highest percentage of fully vaccinated individuals in the county, 58.2% of county residents aged 50 to 64 are fully vaccinated, and 9.7% are partially vaccinated.
Statewide, the 65 and older age group is the most fully vaccinated by percentage, at 66.2%, whereas the 50 to 64 age group is 65.6% fully vaccinated.
Among Nevada County’s largest age group, those aged 18 to 49, 38.9% are fully vaccinated and 9% are partially vaccinated — falling behind within the same age group statewide, in which 50.4% are fully vaccinated and 11.1% are partially vaccinated.
The youngest eligible age group, children aged 12 to 17, are only able to receive the Pfizer vaccine, which in Nevada County is available through several providers, including the county’s Whispering Pines clinic.
Within this age group, in Nevada County, 21% are fully vaccinated and 14.3% are partially vaccinated, making this the only age group as of this week in which the county is surpassing the statewide rate for full vaccination.
Statewide, fully vaccinated residents aged 12 to 17 make up 18.1% of their age group, and those partially vaccinated make up 16.4%.
Victoria Penate is a staff writer for The Union. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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