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Wyoming Behind Most States in COVID Vaccine Distribution

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A recent national survey from the Surgo Foundation found that Wyoming has the third-highest proportion of COVID-19 skeptics in the nation. (van3ssa/Pixabay)
A recent national survey from the Surgo Foundation found that Wyoming has the third-highest proportion of COVID-19 skeptics in the nation. (van3ssa/Pixabay)
 By Eric Galatas - Producer, Contact
June 3, 2021

CHEYENNE, Wyo. - Wyoming ranks among the bottom of states for COVID vaccination rates, and state health officials are encouraging all eligible residents to roll up their sleeves.

Kim Deti, public information officer with the Wyoming Department of Health, said free vaccines are now available in full supply across the state, and health officials already are seeing positive results from those who have received shots.

"The vast majority of the recent new cases in Wyoming have involved people who were not yet fully vaccinated," said Deti. "So we would really like to see everyone who is eligible to go ahead and make that choice to get vaccinated. They're doing their job really well."

Wyofile reported that Vermont, the second lowest-populated state behind Wyoming, is close to meeting its goal of vaccinating 80 percent of residents. Wyoming has so far vaccinated just 28 percent.

Deti said there are numerous reasons people are reluctant to sign up for shots, including the politicization of the public health emergency. People have also expressed concerns over getting shots that were brought to market in record time.

As of late May, Campbell County had seen just 16% of residents vaccinated, and the highest rate in the state is Teton County at close to 59%, above the national rate of 41%. Deti said it's not unusual for people to have questions when deciding whether or not to seek medical help.

"But these COVID 19 vaccines were held to really high safety standards, no safety steps were skipped," said Deti. "They were developed quickly because there was an unprecedented amount of investment from the federal government."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, COVID-19 vaccines underwent tens of thousands of clinical trials, and more than 285 million shots have made their way into arms since mid-December of last year.

Incidents of negative side effects have been extremely rare. For more information about vaccines and where to sign up, visit health.wyo.gov or call toll free, at 888-425-7138.

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