42% of Santa Barbara County Residents at Least Partially COVID-19 Vaccinated
By edhat staff
Santa Barbara County Public Health Department (PHD) officials announced approximately 42% of eligible county residents have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.
During a press conference Friday afternoon, officials stated 27% of the population aged 16 and older are fully vaccinated with 42% receiving at least one dose of a two-dose regime.
PHD Director Dr. Van Do-Reynoso gave "huge kudos" to residents for decreasing the COVID-19 case rate by 41% over the past two weeks to get into the orange tier.
Public Health Officer Dr. Henning Ansorg addressed the numerous conspiracy theories and false statements about the vaccine circling on social media. He clarified the vaccines do not affect fertility and a recent study confirmed the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines are safe for pregnant women. In terms of vaccine development, he confirmed the underlying biotechnology of an mRNA vaccine has been in development for at least a decade.
In Santa Barbara County it appears to be the mid-county area that has lower vaccination rates than north or south county, said Dr. Ansorg. While admitting that vaccine hesitancy is nuanced and "mindboggling," he said conservative communities appear to be less willing to get the COVID-19 vaccine.
Rough estimates show approximately 60% of people want the COVID-19 vaccines, 20% of people are categorically against all vaccines in general, and 20% of people are undecided due to various reasons, said Dr. Ansorg.
No corners were cut in the completion of phases to get FDA authorization and the best protection we have is to get immunized as soon as possible, Dr. Ansorg said.
Vaccine appointments are available through myturn.ca.gov or calling 2-1-1 and selecting option 4. Additionally, there will one community clinic in Santa Barbara this coming Tuesday and another on Wednesday in Santa Maria where appointments are not needed. Visit publichealthsbc.org or call 2-1-1 for more information.