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Summit County tops 90% mark for over-70 vaccinations

Darren Peterson, left, gets the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine from registered nurse Nichole Makaafi at a drive-thru vaccination clinic at Intermountain Healthcare’s The Orthopedic Specialty Hospital in Murray on Thursday, March 4, 2021. Photo: Spenser Heaps, Deseret News

SUMMIT COUNTY, Utah — The Summit County Health Department is reporting large numbers of COVID-19 vaccinations for its older residents.

Right now Summit County said 91% for those over 70 have vaccinations, over 85% for those 65-69, and more than 55% for those over 50-64.

Health Director Dr. Rich Bullough told KSL Newsradio there is a direct correlation between high vaccination numbers and fewer people needing hospital care.

“We’ve got decreasing levels of hospitalizations, decreasing rates of intensive care unit occupancy rates related to COVID-19 infection. We’re really pleased.”

One of the things Summit County is trying to do as well is to work its way out of the high transmission level under guidelines from the Utah Department of Health.

To drop out of the high transmission category, Bullough says they’ll have to reach some benchmarks and stay there for two weeks.

“We are currently meeting the positivity rate and we are meeting hospital, but we’ve only just moved into those categories,” Bullough said.

Bullough says the pandemic is far from over, though. He says ski resorts have done a good job with measures to prevent the spread of coronavirus, but there’s still a substantial risk.

“The fact is, when people gather, it’s not necessarily when they’re on the ski slope, but when they gather, perhaps in a house or a bar or a restaurant or someplace else afterwards, that’s going to drive cases.”

Summit County hopes to have 70% of its total population vaccinated by the end of the summer.


How To Prevent the Spread of COVID-19 Coronavirus

COVID-19 coronaviruses transmitted from person to person. It is a virus that is similar to the common cold and the flu. So, to prevent it from spreading:

  • Wash hands frequently and thoroughly, with soap and water, for at least 20 seconds.
  • Wear a mask.
  • Don’t touch your face.
  • Keep children and those with compromised immune systems away from someone who is coughing or sneezing (in this instance, at least six feet)
  • If there is an outbreak near you, practice social distancing (stay at home, instead of going to the movies, sports events, or other activities.)
  • Get a flu shot.
  • Get vaccinated.

Local resources

KSL Coronavirus Q&A

Utah’s Coronavirus Information

Utah State Board of Education

Utah Hospital Association

The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints

Utah Coronavirus Information Line – 1-800-456-7707

National Resources

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Commonly asked questions, World Health Organization

Cases in the United States


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