Federal COVID-19 vaccination figures show more coverage for local residents

Published 5:07 pm Wednesday, March 24, 2021

SALISBURY — Data released Wednesday shows a more optimistic picture for the progress of COVID-19 vaccinations in Rowan County.

The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services added to its daily updates on county-level vaccinations given inside nursing homes and assisted living facilities, as well as pharmacies receiving vaccines from the federal government. Previously, only statewide numbers were available. The new data shows thousands more previously uncounted locals have received COVID-19 vaccines.

The number of partial vaccinations for local residents increased by 4,436 and the number of full vaccinations jumped by 2,203.

In Rowan County, 24,987 residents have been partially vaccinated for COVID-19, which is 17.6% of the population. Data shows 16,239 local residents have received second doses, which is 11.4% of the population. A majority of both totals are vaccines administered by providers that received allocations from the state, which includes the Rowan County Health Department and Novant Health.

The data additions did not significantly change Rowan’s position near the bottom of the state’s 100 counties for percent of population partially or fully vaccinated. They also do not include vaccines from the U.S. Department of Defense, Indian Health Services and Veterans Health Administration, which would include the Salisbury VA.

Now, 62.5% of Rowan residents 75 and older and 57.2% of residents 65 to 74 have received at least one dose of a vaccine. The next-highest is the 50 to 64 age group, which has seen 20.6% vaccinated. Numbers are lower for full vaccinations, which includes two doses of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine and one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Local data will get a boost from the Rowan County Health Department’s drive-thru clinics schedule for first doses on Thursday and second doses Wednesday and Saturday.

The N.C. Department of Health and Human Services reported one new COVID-19 death of a local resident on Wednesday and 24 new positives. State data show 293 deaths and 15,481 positives since the start of the pandemic as well as 349 positives in the previous two weeks.

Rowan County’s hospital region, an 18-county address known as the Triad Health Care Preparedness Coalition, reports 205 COVID-19 positives, including 35 in the previous 24 hours.