Ky. county seeing uptick in COVID-19 vaccinations

Published: Sep. 23, 2021 at 6:34 PM EDT
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ASHLAND, Ky. (WSAZ) - After COVID-19 vaccinations dropped off during the summer months, some Kentucky counties are seeing an uptick in vaccination rates.

At the beginning of August, Boyd County’s vaccination rate was 36.1%. Now it’s up to 47.58%.

“Initially we were seeing an increase in the vaccines where people were making appointments, but they still weren’t showing up for their appointments and that still happens but I would say that third week of August was when we started to see the uptick in vaccines,” said Erin Crace, the Nursing Administrator for the Ashland-Boyd County Health Department.

In just the last two weeks, more than 2,000 people were vaccinated. Crace believes this is due to people seeing the increase of cases and strain on the health care system.

“In my perspective, any increase is a good thing because even if one person gets vaccinated that’s one more person that’s getting protected,” Crace said.

Veronica Darby from Greenup County was one of the people not sure getting the vaccine was the right choice for her.

“I was scared. That’s why I was on the fence I was scared of the unknowns,” Darby said.

She is one of the many who changed their minds. Darby said she was nervous to get the vaccine after hearing of some of the rare side effects and her health issues.

“I was afraid I was going to have a reaction and have to use my epi-pens but I didn’t have to use my epi-pens,” Darby said.

After seeing the impact COVID was having on her friends on the frontlines of the pandemic, she rolled up her sleeve. She also said she wanted to make sure she was alive to see her children grow up.

“I’m more scared of the unknowns of COVID-19 and what people are going through right now and I’m seeing how it’s impacting people’s lives day to day,” she said. “It was a sense of relief that I did it finally and I was happy and excited, and I knew not to be scared and I wanted to be a voice for people getting vaccinated.”

She says she wishes she would have gotten the shot sooner but is glad she’s now protected against the virus.

“It’s never too late to get the shot. You can always go get it, and it is nothing to be scared of,” Darby said.

Boyd County is on track to have the most COVID-19 cases they’ve ever had in a single month in September. They are 170 cases away from surpassing the previous record in December of 2020.

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