WENATCHEE — Most of North Central Washington is ahead of the state curve on vaccinating its populations against coronavirus.
Department of Health measurements show about 31 percent of Chelan County residents are now fully vaccinated, meaning they’ve received all needed doses in their vaccine course. That’s compared to just over 23 percent of people statewide.
Okanogan County and Douglas County likewise beat the state average, at 29 and 26 percent respectively, but Grant County is ninth from the bottom of all Washington counties, at 18.5 percent. Health officials say vaccination remains a key element in the fight against COVID-19, alongside masking and social distancing.
For Chelan or Douglas County residents who haven’t received their first dose of vaccine, the Chelan-Douglas Health District will offer first doses of Moderna, starting Monday in Cashmere. Up to 320 doses will be available to people 18 and older at the Chelan County Expo Center from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Vaccine seekers must register in advance for the drive-through clinic, using the online PrepMod tool, or call 886-6487. The health district plans more such outreach clinics in the future. Unlike the Pfizer vaccine for coronavirus, which can be given to 16- and 17-year-olds, Moderna’s vaccine is not yet approved for people under 18.
Both Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses, separated by three to four weeks, to be fully effective. Those receiving a Moderna shot Monday will be automatically enrolled for a second shot four weeks later.