Sonoma County continues to push vaccine rollout
By Katherine Minkiewicz, Staff Writer, Sonoma West Times & News, February 12, 2021
Sonoma County is administering COVID-19 vaccines at a faster rate than other counties of its size, according to new data from the Sonoma County Department of Health Services.
Forty-five percent of Sonoma County’s age 75 and older population has received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and county health officials hope that once they near that percentage of folks aged 70 and older they can then move on to vaccinating those 65 and older.
In total, as of Feb. 10, the county has administered 74,426 vaccines. 47,722 have received the first dose and 13,352 have received their second dose.
“I admit that we still have a long way to go, but I do think it’s important to stop and recognize what a significant accomplishment this has been given the limited supply of vaccines,” said Sonoma County Board of Supervisors Chair Lynda Hopkins.
According to county health vaccine distribution data, 4,063 Hispanic/Latino persons have received the first dose of the vaccine, and 1,002 have received their second dose.
23,084 white persons in the county have received their first dose and a total of 6,212 have received their second dose.
Dr. Urmila Shende, the county’s COVID-19 vaccine chief, said these numbers will likely change as the county continues to work towards vaccinating those in all of the tiers and in the wide tier of 1b.
Those who are in the zip code 95409 (Santa Rosa) have the highest rate of vaccination at this point.
So far, a total of 3,252 Windsor residents have been vaccinated with at least one dose. 4,036 Sebastopol residents have been vaccinated and in Graton 26% of a portion of its residents have been vaccinated.
Healdsburg comes in at 16%, Cloverdale at 17% and Geyserville at 17%, about an even distribution according to Shende.
Currently Kaiser accounts for providing the majority of vaccinations that we see in the county according to Kate Pack, the county’s lead epidemiologist.
District 4 Supervisor James Gore, who’s also the current president of the California State Association of Counties, said the county will continue to get vaccines through federally qualified health clinics, however, in the state’s vaccine rollout Blue Shield of California is now lined up to be the state’s third-party vaccine administrator.
COVID case rates
Sonoma County COVID case rates are significantly lower than what we saw over the holiday season.
As of Feb. 10, the county has 20.8 cases per day per 100,000 and its adjusted case rate is 21.2. The county’s overall testing positivity rate is 5.5% and the Healthy Places Index equity quartiles is 8.6%, which is down from around 10% just a few days ago.
“All of these numbers are dropping, but we’re still not near the red tier,” said Sonoma County Health Officer Dr. Sundari Mase. “We need to be at a case rate of under seven cases per day per 100,000 to go into the red tier and both of the testing positivity percentages needs to be less than 8%.”
Mase said we’re moving in the right direction. She also stressed the importance of continuing to get tested. Since the end of the holiday season the county has been testing a lot fewer people and now the county is closer to getting around 500 tests per day per 100,000.
“We need to get that up. I think a lot of people wanted to get tested because of the holidays to ensure that everybody was safe, but I want to underline the importance of continuing to get tested, especially if you’re concerned about being in a place where you might have been exposed, or just have any reason for a concern for testing,” Mase said.
OptumServe, the state-run testing platform, is still doing testing in Santa Rosa, Petaluma, and in Windsor and has many appointments available.
“What that will do is help us with adjusting the factor that we multiply by for our adjusted case rate, which can be significantly better than our unadjusted case rate if we can get more tests done in a day,” Mase said.
This article was produced by Sonoma West Times & News, the hometown newspaper of Sebastopol and west county since 1889. See more news at sonomawest.com