COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Columbus Public Health has now given 200,000 doses of the COVID-19 shot, and while it is celebrating the milestone, the department says the work is far from over.
Columbus Public Health Director Dr. Mysheika Roberts said she is incredibly proud of her staff for hitting this mark, but more than half of Columbus is still not fully vaccinated.
“It was very significant because there’s a lot of time and effort that’s gone into hitting that number,” Roberts said.
Reaching the 200,000 mark has been a journey, with Roberts point to vaccine demand being super high in the beginning, requiring the department to use the Celeste Center for drive-through clinics. Then demand fell, with Columbus Public Health moving to smaller, community-based clinics.
“So we’ve gone through a lot of different emotional waves, a lot of different levels of energy, but it’s a fantastic milestone,” she said.
Overall, Roberts said 48 percent of the Columbus community is fully vaccinated, with 52 percent having started the process.
“We’re a little behind, but if you had asked me that question about six weeks ago, we’ve gone up anywhere between four and five percentage points just in the past six weeks, so that’s progress,” Roberts said.
Given those numbers, Roberts said the 200,000 milestone is something to celebrate, but there is still work to be done.
The department’s next goal is 250,000.
“It is the best way to protect yourself from COVID-19 and from some of the serious complications of COVID-19,” Roberts said. “And that virus is out there and it’s going to be with us for a while, so please vax up.”
Roberts said she expects an increase in numbers once the vaccine is approved for those 5 to 11-years-old, something Pfizer is seeking emergency use authorization for with the federal government.
Roberts said that of the people who have received their first COVID-19 vaccine doses through Columbus Public Health, 90 percent returned to get the second dose.