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Students Could Boost Monroe County's Vaccination Rate, Which Already Exceeds 50%

On Friday, Hoosiers age 80 and older began scheduling vaccination appointments. Those who haven’t yet can do so at OurShot.in.gov or by calling 211.

(Provided by Indiana University Health)

Monroe County’s COVID-19 vaccination rate is now at 52.8% for the local population eligible for the shot age 12 and older.

County health officials have said for months the goal is to reach 70-75% this summer.

"We’re not where we want to be. That is not the end number we want to see, but it is progress, and we continue to make that," said county health administrator, Penny Caudill.

Caudill said IU’s campus-wide vaccine requirement for students and staff will help drive up local vaccination numbers.

READ MORE: IU Amends Vaccine Requirement, Will No Longer Mandate Proof Of COVID-19 Vaccine

"We want to make it as easy for people to get as possible," said Caudill. "The push going forward is to give vaccines out to health providers so that people have it when they go see their primary care provider and they can ask questions."

IU said the vaccine requirement is not impacting this fall’s freshman enrollment, as it will be the largest Hoosier class ever at more than 9,300 students.

"We’re hearing that people are pleased we have that requirement in place," said IU’s Head of COVID-19 Response, Kirk White.

White said the university expects at least 70% of all students, faculty and staff will be compliant with the vaccine requirement by the start of the fall semester.

"That’ll get us where we need to be in that concept of herd immunity," said White.

All individuals vaccinated will not have to wear masks or practice social distancing on-campus. Those without the vaccine must keep abiding by all COVID-19 safety guidelines, as well as participate in the university’s mitigation testing program.

IU will also continue its vaccine incentive program where students and staff can win prizes until June 28.

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