At this stage in the pandemic in Minnesota, over 4 million vaccine shots have been administered, more than half of the state’s population has received at least one vaccine dose, and the positivity rate is dropping again.
These positive trends do not negate the fact that there have now been over 7,100 deaths linked to COVID-19 in Minnesota and many still in the hospital being treated for the virus — nearly 180 patients in the ICU as of late April. Community spread is also a big concern with about 43% of reported cases coming from unknown exposure sources
So, a lot of work still needs to be done, which is why state officials are urging more vaccinations and continuing efforts for improving access to the vaccine.
Getting vaccines directly to communities via mobile vaccination units has been a recent development. Here’s Gov. Tim Walz at a recent press conference in Richfield.
“People aren’t hesitant to get the vaccine if they’re just really busy, or don’t have time, or a computer..this is making it as easy as possible for literally people to walk across their apartments and get the vaccine,” he said.
Walz says the goal is to get at least 70 to 80 percent of Minnesotans fully vaccinated and that could happen as soon as late May. Right now about 41% of eligible Minnesotans have completed their vaccine series and are fully vaccinated.
Getting vaccines and resources to diverse communities continues. COVID-19 community coordinators, working with the state’s health department, are supplying vaccine information and other resources, including help with transportation, housing and language barriers during the pandemic.
More from Minnesota Native News
- Robert Lilligren’s Gift for Indigenizing Leadership, Politics, and Policy MakingOn today’s show, part one of Leah and Cole’s rich conversation with the visionary leader Robert Lilligren (White Earth Ojibwe Nation) who is the President and CEO of the Native American Community Development Institute, and who serves the 7th District (South Minneapolis) on the Metropolitan Council.
- Minnesotans As Young As 12 Now Eligible For COVID VaccinationThe FDA’s review of Pfizer’s data confirmed the shots were safe and effective in adolescents, and that the side effects were “consistent” with older age groups. In the study, nearly 98% of adolescents were found to have produced enough antibodies in the month after their second dose.
- Minnesota Aims to Close Vaccine Gaps With Pop-up Sites and Mobile Vaccination ClinicsHealth officials say 31 percent of Minnesotans have been living in zip codes with “high vulnerability” scores during the pandemic.
- How Tribes Provide Leadership and Learning for Public Health Approaches During PandemicOn today’s show, Leah talks with Mariah Norwood (Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma) who is the Infectious Disease American Indian Liaison at the Minnesota Department of Health. Mariah Norwood is also a J.D. Candidate at the Mitchell Hamline School of Law, and she has her Master’s in Health Administration from the University of Oklahoma.
- Opportunities for Sharing and LearningThe Mitchell Hamline School of Law seeks to address systemic racism in Minnesota’s criminal justice system… And a new scholarship program wants to help descendants of Indian Boarding Schools… Plus, do you or someone you know have an Indigenous story of strength to showcase? Online nominations are open!Reporter Leah Lemm has these stories…