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One-Fifth Of Allegheny County Residents Have Been Vaccinated

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Katie Blackley
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90.5 WESA
People wait for 15 minutes after their first COVID-19 vaccine shot at a clinic on the North Shore.

More than 20% of Allegheny County residents have received at least one shot of the COVID-19 vaccine, according to data from the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the VA Pittsburgh Healthcare System.

Sarah Boden reports these numbers do not include vaccinations of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine—which educators will start to receive tomorrow.

As many as 3,000 employees of Pittsburgh Public Schools will receive their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine later this week

Sarah Boden reports this comes after a push from the federal government to prioritize educators for vaccinations. Giant Eagle is administering the shots at Heinz Field on Thursday and Friday. The district is working directly with school leaders to schedule appointments.

Pennsylvania has earmarked its entire allotment of the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine for educators and school staff, from Pre-K through high school. But, the initial shipments will cover less than half of the estimated 200,000 doses required.

Giant Eagle says its efforts will complement the initiative, and that it hopes to extend vaccination appointments to all educators and school staff in southwestern Pennsylvania starting as soon as next week.

Penn State researchers study wastewater to track COVID-19

A team of Penn State researchers is testing wastewater to track the rise and fall of the COVID-19 virus in the State College area, WPSU’s Anne Danahy reports.

Andrew Read, director of the Huck Institutes of Life Sciences at Penn State, is among those testing the university’s wastewater for COVID-19. He says that while testing people for the virus can go up and down, “you can’t escape the wastewater.”

The team began the project in the summer of 2020 and have been testing wastewater samples daily at three campus and town locations.

“For us, that’s been really important at understanding the variation,” Read said. “I think that gives us one of the clearest pictures of what’s happening anywhere in the country.”

They’re also working with the state prisons on testing. Read said wastewater monitoring will be an inexpensive way to keep watching out for outbreaks of the virus after many have been vaccinated.

LATEST NUMBERS:

Allegheny County:

  • 348 new cases
  • 2 new deaths

Pennsylvania:

  • 2,975 new cases
  • 1,502 hospitalizations
  • 303 patients in the ICU
  • 40 new deaths
  • 3,047,539 vaccine doses administered