McLeod County's vaccination clinics have become smaller and less frequent.
Week after week, the county had offered two clinics with the occasional third clinic targeting specific populations. At the June 1 County Board meeting, Berit Spors, Health and Human Services director, told commissioners there had only been one clinic the previous week.
"Fewer people are interested," she said, adding that residents are seeking other vaccination options as well, such as through local businesses and health care providers.
At this point, the availability of vaccines is not an obstacle.
"We've gotten the word out. You can go anywhere now to get a vaccination," Spors said. "We've kind of hit a wall as far as people who just aren't interested, or are still deciding for themselves."
She advises residents seeking more information to seek it from the Centers for Disease Control, or from the Minnesota Department of Health. Residents who feel unsure about those sources can reach out to McLeod County Health and Human Services.
"They can call us and we can walk them through it," Spors said.
According to state data available Monday morning, McLeod County sits at about 7% points behind the state rate of vaccinations, but not in all categories. Data measuring the percent of population with at least one dose of vaccination shows:
- Total population: McLeod County 46%, statewide 53%
- Age 12-plus: McLeod County 54%, statewide 63%
- Age 16-plus: McLeod County 57%, statewide 65%
- Age 65-plus: McLeod County 87%, statewide 90%
Spors said the county has focused on the 65-plus population from the start.
"I think that (number) is really good. I'm excited about that," she said.
She believes there is a chance for the 12-plus and 16-plus population data to improve, as a vaccine has not been available to those groups for as long as others. But she is concerned people who have received one dose may not all return to complete their vaccine series.
"It's good you had one dose, but it's not fully affective," she said.
Across the nation, vaccination rates vary. In Mississippi, for instance, 36% of residents have received one dose of the vaccination. In Vermont, 71% of residents have received a dose. Nearby in North Dakota, 42% of residents have received a dose, while in Wisconsin it is 51%.
Meanwhile, on the other side of the coin, state data shows COVID cases are slowing again. As of Tuesday, McLeod County had reported 4,187 total confirmed cases, an increase of only a few from the previous week, and 61 deaths.
"We're starting to see less cases," Spors said.