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Bogen: The Fewer People Who Get Vaccinated, The Longer This Virus Will Linger In Our Lives

Heinz Field COVID-19 Vaccine Clinic
Katie Blackley
90.5 WESA
Woman draws dose of Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine at Giant Eagle clinic at Heinz Field. (3/11/2021)

Despite the fact that roughly one quarter of Allegheny County residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, coronavirus cases and hospitalizations continue to rise.

“The fewer people who get vaccinated, the longer this virus will linger in our lives. And the best way to defeat this virus is to continue the vaccine rollout as fast as possible," said county health department director Dr. Debra Bogen, who noted there have been at least 79 COVID-19 deaths since the beginning of March.

Bogen said that there have been just 109 coronavirus cases documented out of some 213,00 people in Allegheny County who had been fully vaccinated for COVID by the end of March. She said this shows that the vaccines are extremely effective.

The small percentage of people who do get COVID-19 after vaccination experience less severe symptoms compared to unvaccinated patients.

Even with the recent pause of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, local officials say there are plenty of open appointments with providers administering the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines. This includes a UPMC clinic at Pittsburgh Mills in Tarentum on Thursday that is accepting walk-ins from 8 a.m.-5 p.m.