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Map: See how few people are getting the new COVID booster in your California county

Mercury News 10/18/2022 Harriet Blair Rowan, Julia Prodis Sulek
Screen Shot 2022-10-18 at 12.17.58 PM © Provided by Mercury News Screen Shot 2022-10-18 at 12.17.58 PM

California is among the most vaccinated and boosted states in the country.

But data from the California Department of Public Health show that as of last week just 5% of Golden State residents here have sought out the new booster shots designed to protect against omicron variants. Does that mean we could be in for a holiday surge of infections?

Even the Bay Area, with some of the highest vaccination rates in the country, is just now approaching 1 in 10 residents getting the newest COVID booster shots, nearly six weeks after it was authorized by the FDA.

At the height of the booster campaign last December, there were 17,000 shots going into arms every day in Santa Clara County, but this month the average shots in a given day hasn’t risen above 2,000.

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The first series of boosters were embraced much more broadly, with over half of residents in the Bay Area getting a complete vaccination series plus at least one booster.

Public health officials and health care providers say they are combating a general apathy toward the virus, especially since official COVID case counts have dropped to near-record lows, and deaths have settled in recent weeks at around 30 per day in the state.

“We encourage you to take your child, take your parents, take a family member, make appointments and come get boosted,” Santa Clara County Public Health Director Sara Cody said Monday. “Get boosted, get protected so that you can enjoy the upcoming fall and winter holidays.”

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