Half of NC’s 65+ population vaccinated against COVID-19

Coronavirus

RALEIGH, N.C. (WNCN) – North Carolina officials said Tuesday about half the population 65 years and older has been vaccinated so far in the state.

They’re starting to receive more vaccine from the federal government but said it’s still not enough to meet demand.

People were coming and going from their vaccine appointments in Wake County on Tuesday.

“We’re trying to make sure everyone is safe,” said Priscilla Petty, administrator at the assisted-living facility St. Marks Manor.

Petty took residents at St. Marks Manor to receive their second vaccine shot.

“All the people in the group home came and got their shots,” said Petty.

They said it was a smooth process at the Wake County Health Department.

“The first one stung, I didn’t even feel this one,” said resident Margie Garris.

The Wake County Health Department received 6,650 doses this week.

More vaccine doses arrived this week after the county health department put in an application with the state.

“There’s still a long road ahead in terms of bringing additional doses into the county,” said Ryan Jury, mass vaccination branch director.

The state said it received 145,000 doses this week and are getting an additional 5 percent from the federal government.

“The most significant challenge we face is there is just not enough vaccine available,” said Dr. Mandy Cohen with the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.

The state’s giving health systems and departments a baseline allocation each week based on population.

Health officials are then giving more doses to areas that meet certain criteria. An emphasis is being put on equity and reaching underserved communities.

They’re also giving more doses for community vaccination events, like the ones being held this week at PNC Arena in Wake County.

“We hope we can continue to see additional doses come into Wake County,” said Jury.

So more people, like those at St. Marks Manor, can feel safer.

“Because we have a facility, it’s not just about me. It’s about everybody else,” said Petty.

State health officials said they hope to have more details sometime this week on when those in the next group, which is essential workers, will have access to the vaccine.

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