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Approx. 77K eligible residents in region not fully immunized

There's around 10,000 people who received a first shot of COVID-19 vaccine and are currently eligible for a second, but still haven't gotten it
WRFIRSTDOSE
A Grand River Hospital staff member holds the first dose of the Pfizer vaccine to be administered in the Region.

Waterloo Region achieved a COVID-19 vaccination milestone on Thursday as more than 90 per cent of eligible residents have received at least one dose. 

However, there are still many who are proving to be hesitant or outright refusing to roll up their sleeves.

During Friday's community COVID-19 update, Medical Officer of Health Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang said approximately 77,000 eligible residents have not been fully immunized. 

The region's vaccine rollout lead, Vickie Murray, said in order to get second dose coverage to 90 per cent, about 20,683 second shots need to be administered. 

Out of those, approximately 10,000 people are eligible right now for a second shot but haven't completed their sequence yet. The remaining are set to become eligible over the next month.

"While we are pleased to see the 90 per cent milestone for first doses, we do encourage everyone who is eligible for a second dose now to get that dose as soon as possible," said Murray. 

She noted the seven-day rolling average for shots administered in Waterloo Region is around 900 per day. Pharmacies are becoming more popular as well. 

Murray said in August, community pharmacies accounted for 32 per cent of total daily doses administered. In September, it was 52 per cent --- so far this month, they're at 59 per cent.

Mobile vaccination outreach efforts are also proving successful as Murray noted that this past Wednesday, 47 per cent of doses given on buses were first doses. 

Dr. Hsiu-Li Wang noted there are still approximately 82,000 children under the age of 12 in Waterloo Region who are not yet eligible for a vaccine. 

"Therefore it remains critical that we maintain certain public health precautions while we continue to work towards the highest rates of immunization possible in our community," said Dr. Wang.

COVID-19 trends in Waterloo Region have stabilized, and as a result, the region is shifting back to a Monday to Friday reporting model for COVID-19. That means no more weekend updates starting October 16. 

"We will continue to update our case numbers and our dashboard Mondays to Fridays at 1:30 p.m. as usual, with data that are current as of 11:59 p.m. the previous day," explained Dr. Wang. 

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