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Where are the undervaccinated pockets?

Thursday, Jun 17, 2021

* Bloomberg

As much of the country emerges from masking and social distancing, undervaccinated pockets in the U.S. still threaten to bring the virus roaring back.

Less than 25% of the population is fully vaccinated in at least 482 counties, according to an analysis of Centers for Disease Control and Prevention data by Bloomberg News. Many of these counties are more rural and less economically advantaged than the rest of the U.S., and a majority of their voters in the last presidential election chose Donald Trump, according to the analysis of 2,700 U.S. counties.

Though more than 174 million Americans have received at least one dose of a vaccine, accounting for about 64.6% of the adult population, such averages belie stark gaps in vaccination rates at a local level. With more contagious versions of the virus like the delta variant taking hold, this creates opportunities for further spread.

* To see a larger version of this interactive map, click here

- Posted by Rich Miller        

29 Comments
  1. - BCOSEC - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 7:37 am:

    Education seems to be the primary demographic.

    Lots of brain drain in the rural areas.


  2. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 8:32 am:

    This is perhaps the best reason of all why Illinois should not emulate red states.

    “still threaten to bring the virus roaring back”

    Will the virus come “roaring back” among the vaccinated? According to one report, the overwhelming number of hospitalized are unvaccinated. A recent study shows vaccines greatly reduce hospitalization from the feared Delta variant.


  3. - Watcher of the Skies - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 8:32 am:

    It’s really fun when you compare it to a map of the 2020 election.


  4. - Perrid - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 8:48 am:

    Grandson, the delta variant is making people more sick than the old variants. The vaccination is what is reducing hospitalization, it’s not an inherent part of the delta variant, quite the opposite.


  5. - hisgirlfriday - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 8:48 am:

    Helpful vacation planning tool for anyone thinking about a trip to the Ozarks.


  6. - ChrisB - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:03 am:

    So all of Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan hit the mark, but we don’t? Come on guys, get it together.


  7. - Amalia - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:24 am:

    Wrigley Field, Chicago Cubs.


  8. - Responsa - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:29 am:

    ==So all of Iowa, Wisconsin and Michigan hit the mark, but we don’t? Come on guys, get it together.==

    Don’t know what map you’re reading or what counties you clicked on but “all of Iowa, WI and MI didn’t ‘hit the mark’” unless 25% of the population is the mark being sought. (It’s not.) Cook County IL, for example, at 42.7% vaccinated is still far off the national figure, is not a hotbed of Trump voters, and has a large population. Everybody needs to get it together and not sit around blaming other people and pointing fingers.


  9. - TinyDancer(FKASue) - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:34 am:

    =Will the virus come “roaring back” among the vaccinated? =

    Only if it mutates into a form that evades the vaccine.
    And it’s mutating constantly. As long as it keeps spreading, it keeps mutating.:

    https://www.vox.com/22537118/covid-19-variants-alpha-beta-delta-gamma


  10. - TinyDancer(FKASue) - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:36 am:

    This is all so Darwinian.


  11. - ChrisB - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:39 am:

    @Responsa

    Am I reading the map wrong? I don’t see any yellow counties in those three states. IL has a few.

    I’m not saying over 25% is good, I’m saying less than 25% is abysmal. At this point in the game, no one should be below that.


  12. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:46 am:

    “Everybody needs to get it together and not sit around blaming other people and pointing fingers.”

    Agree. I want most everyone to get vaccinated (except those who have valid reasons). But it won’t happen, sadly. I want everyone to have health insurance, but that won’t happen either.

    As was said above, the virus keeps mutating, and that is a great concern. But so far so good, thanks to the science and experts so many in our population reject and deny.


  13. - illdoc57 - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:49 am:

    Respectfully, Since there is travel between states how we are doing with vaccinations throughout the country is an Illinois issue.


  14. - cermak_rd - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:53 am:

    Yes, 42.7% isn’t great but it’s not all that different than the 48% in DuPage or the lower amounts in Kane and McHenry. These counties have managed to get a lot of jabs in arms by opening mass immunization centers. But now it gets harder as one needs to one by one find the unvacced and remove whatever barriers they have to vaccination.


  15. - Pundent - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 9:53 am:

    = Please stick to ILLINOIS issues, please.=

    The virus doesn’t stop at the state line or border for that matter. And if you haven’t noticed people are traveling a lot more these days.


  16. - Almost the Weekend - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 10:08 am:

    Is that Vermilion County in East Central Illinois the orange in the sea of pink?


  17. - cermak_rd - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 10:09 am:

    As far as travel it looks like most of the places worth going to (e.g. cities, national parks) are above this 25% Mendoza line.


  18. - Really? - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 10:15 am:

    It’s lazy to threaten that low vaccination areas “threaten to bring the virus roaring back” without considering why hasn’t the virus roared back in those areas already? COVID is not waiting to pounce or attack like an army General executing a strategy. If it were to happen, it would have happened (in its current form), especially as those areas probably are not social distancing nor adhering to masks. *standard disclosure: I know COVID is real, I had COVID, I know people who have died from COVID, yada yada yada.


  19. - Pundent - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 10:26 am:

    = If it were to happen, it would have happened (in its current form), especially as those areas probably are not social distancing nor adhering to masks.=

    Makes sense until you look at the infection rates among the unvaccinated and realize they are similar to what COVID was at its peak. And that’s kind of the point of the map.


  20. - Candy Dogood - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 10:37 am:

    We need to put the Southern Seven Health Department under a microscope.


  21. - Groundhog Day - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 10:41 am:

    I think part of the issue is that fall and winter are more conducive for respiratory viral spread. So the worry is that things will really pop as school resumes, esp in low vaccinated areas.


  22. - Friendly Bob Adams - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 11:04 am:

    The Bloomberg article doesn’t say what the national percentage is for fully vaccinated. It cites the 67% with at least one dose, so the fully vaccinated number is less than that.

    Also- I love these national county-level maps.


  23. - Cool Papa Bell - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 11:16 am:

    @Candy = We need to put the Southern Seven Health Department under a microscope. =

    I don’t think this on the shoulders of public health anymore. The shots are out there, appointments are basically walk-in; the issue now is folks just aren’t ready to get one or never will.

    No public health department will ever be able to over come the “reasons” people hold tight on the issue of this vaccine.

    The South Seven is pushing up against four of the hardest things to overcome in this vaccine fight - rural, poor, lack of higher education and concern in communities of color.

    If deep southern Illinois ever gets to 50 or 60% fully vaccinated I’ll be shocked (and over joyed)


  24. - Zagreb - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 12:28 pm:

    Fayette County, Pope County is beating you.


  25. - TheInvisibleMan - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 12:30 pm:

    === I don’t think this on the shoulders of public health anymore ===

    With respect, my local health department has a qanon supporter, who also organized the Mary Miller rally in DC, on the public health and safety committee.

    Their group is spreading nonsense like getting the covid vaccine will actually give you covid.

    In some areas this absolutely falls on the local heath department.


  26. - anon2 - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 1:40 pm:

    Three of the counties under 25% are in the Eastern Bloc: Jasper, Cumberland and Lawrence.


  27. - Fayette County - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 2:36 pm:

    This anti-vaccine mindset helps explain why we have Mary Miller as as Congressperson and Wilhour as our State Rep. Those of us who have been fully vaccinated are greatly outnumbered. Zagreb dont give up hope….most around here would take having the lowest vaccination rate in the state as a badge of honor so we still may win the Gold.


  28. - CharlieKratos - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 2:47 pm:

    I really wish they had done a better job of colors on the map. Green or blue should’ve been used for over 25% vaccination and red/orange for under.


  29. - Grandson of Man - Thursday, Jun 17, 21 @ 3:01 pm:

    Why wouldn’t a correlation exist between anti-mitigation/anti-vaccine attitudes and higher infection rates? That seems pretty evident. Maybe the infection rates would be even higher in Trump country if many who live there didn’t get vaccinated.


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