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Saturday, September 18, 2021

Marion County health official says less than 6% of vaccinated residents contract COVID-19

A health official says that less than 6% of Marion County residents who are vaccinated have contracted COVID-19.

Deputy Secretary Mark Lander of the Florida Department of Health in Marion County provided the information during a COVID-19 update for the Marion County Board of County Commissioners on Tuesday, August 3. 

“If you’re unvaccinated, you should not be in a large crowd right now,” said Lander. He  emphasized that getting the vaccine was still the “biggest preventer of COVID-19” and said that it was the “most effective tool” in fighting the spread. 

Lander says that the breakthrough rate, which is the percentage of people that are infected after getting the vaccine, is less than 6% in the state of Florida, and even lower in Marion County. 

Lander says the benefits of getting the vaccine include reducing the risk of contracting the virus, teaching your body how to fight the virus, and reducing the risk of severe symptoms, among others.

Lander suggested the vast majority of cases, including those requiring hospitalization, were residents who had not received the vaccine. 

Last week, the county reported 1,881 cases of COVID-19. The week prior, 1,056 new cases were reported. 

“If you’re unvaccinated, you need to look at every protective measure,” said Lander, before suggesting that residents should consider wearing masks if they feel it’s the “right decision” in public. 

“Don’t put yourself in situations you’re not comfortable with,” said Lander. He advised against congregating in crowds, especially residents that are unvaccinated. 

Lander says that the small percentage of those who have contracted COVID-19 after receiving the vaccine have experienced far “milder” symptoms than those without the vaccine.

According to Lander, more Marion County residents are getting the vaccine than ever before. Three weeks ago, 1,384 individuals were vaccinated and two weeks ago, that number grew to 2,025 individuals. 

Last week, over 3,720 individuals were vaccinated in Marion County. 

The health department recently announced that COVID-19 testing will return to the Southeastern Livestock Pavilion this week. 

In addition, the department is operating two additional sites at three separate facilities across the county. 

To find out more information about vaccinations, visit the Florida Department of Health in Marion County website.