Comparing North Dakota vaccine roll out to neighboring states

Published: Mar. 22, 2021 at 3:56 PM CDT
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BISMARCK, N.D. (KFYR) - The Centers for Disease Control reports more than 126 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered to Americans.

North and South Dakota are among the top states in giving out shots.

Four Bismarck healthcare workers received the first COVID vaccine in the state on Dec. 14.

More than 340,000 doses have been administered in all 53 counties and 21.1% of residents are considered fully vaccinated. On Friday, the North Dakota Department of Health announced the vaccine will be available for the general public beginning March 29.

“I do think this will help in continuing to get as many people vaccinated as possible as soon as possible,” said State Immunization Coordinator Molly Howell.

To the west, in Montana, more than 400,000 doses have been administered, and 157,000 residents are fully immunized.

Last week, Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte announced another milestone.

“All Montanan’s, 16 and older, will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine on April 1,” said Gianforte.

South Dakota has administered 350,000 vaccines. 37.33% of the population has had at least one dose, while 23.36% has had both.

“These vaccines work, we’re seeing it in the data there are positive kinks in our curves,” said Dr. Rochelle Walensky, director of the CDC.

Some states are seeing people crossing the border to get their vaccines, like this woman on Twitter who claims she came from Minnesota to get the vaccine in North Dakota.

“We’ve seen lots of folks from neighboring states in particular, trying to sign up and of course we weed those out. We are also aware of groups in other states, there’s a particular Facebook group in MN that has been advocating people to come here to be vaccinated which I think speaks to the success that we’ve had in terms of getting shots into arms,” said South Dakota state Heath Secretary Kim Malsam-Rysdon.

In Minnesota, 25.7% of people have the vaccine, while 15.3% have the completed series. Minnesota plans to open vaccines to the general public later this summer. However, the Biden administration says they have a plan to offer the vaccine to everyone, earlier.

“May 1, by which all Americans should be eligible to get the vaccine,” said Andy Slavitt, acting administrator of the center for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

The CDC says the United States is vaccinating approximately 3 million people per day. Health experts say about 70% of a state’s population must be vaccinated to reach herd immunity.

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