San Antonio Mayor Ron Nirenberg held a press conference alongside Bexar County Judge Nelson Wolff, city and county leaders, and health officials in a bid to encourage citizens to get vaccinated amidst the sudden increase of COVID-19 infections in the state of Texas since last week.
The officials reiterated the importance of getting vaccinated and urged people to not be hesitant in getting themselves inoculated. They also spoke about the efficacy of the vaccines.
More than 1 million people have been fully vaccinated so far in the San Antonio area. Hence, local officials still feel fortunate when they compare the present situation to how the status was six months ago.
Nirenberg said that there was a big difference between now and January. “Back then, we were just starting to distribute vaccines. Now more than 1 million people have been fully vaccinated in Bexar County — that’s 62% of our residents.”
More than 70% had received at least one dose, he added.
Data released by San Antonio Metro Health on Wednesday stated that as of now, the positivity rate of new COVID cases in Texas is at 11.2 percent and 265 COVID-19 infections per day. According to the last week’s data, there was a positivity rate of 5.4% and 126 average cases were recorded per day. The number of people in the hospital with COVID-19 also rose from 155 to 258 in just a week. The last time that such a high rate was recorded was in January.
Most of those who tested positive are not yet vaccinated, Dr. Brain Alsip, Chief Medical Officer for University Health, said. “The message could not be clearer, COVID vaccines prevent hospitalization and death. Without being immunized, you are at risk. This risk extends to those who cannot be vaccinated, such as children under the age of 12 from whom the vaccine is not yet eligible and also those with compromised immune systems who may not respond as well to vaccines,” he said.
Data also shows that those who refuse to get vaccinated are young adults. As per the numbers, only 33 percent of those under 29 years of age are fully vaccinated, while only 29 percent of those aged 15 to 19 are fully vaccinated. Judge Wolff then pleaded to these young adults and teenagers to get the shots because they are free, and if they don’t get it, they are putting more people at risk.