SAN JOSE (KPIX) – The largest county in the Bay Area is working hard to achieve collective immunity and is offering its residents incentives if they receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Santa Clara County reported on Friday that 79.7% of its eligible residents had received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine and 70.8% were fully immunized.
“There is no magic number for herd immunity, but if we reach 85% we will do very well, there will be very little virus transmission,” said Dr Marty Fenstersheib, head of Santa Clara County vaccines.
The county faces a significant slowdown in demand for the COVID-19 vaccine. Major vaccination sites are expected to close, including the Levi’s Stadium site, as county leaders find unvaccinated residents are now more likely to turn to their doctors for final advice.
“It’s a final push,” Fenstersheib said. “As I always say, the first million was really easy and that last percent is a lot harder.”
The county is not withdrawing its efforts even though the residents are. Residents learned this week that they would participate in a rally to win tickets to Golden State Warriors concerts and games if they got vaccinated at county venues. The new winners will be announced each Wednesday at 2 p.m. on the public health department’s Instagram live feed.
It’s not just the county that offers incentives to those who get vaccinated. The state is offering 50,000 free tickets to Six Flags Magic Mountain and has just handed out gift cards and millions of dollars in cash prizes.
“Whatever it takes,” said Heather Cardoza, who was vaccinated a few months ago. “I think we all have to do this and I don’t think it’s going to go away. I think this will be something that we have to do every year, so we better get used to it now. “
Monica Zehner, who is also vaccinated, believes those who are reluctant to get vaccinated won’t necessarily buy the County Dangling Carrot.
“I don’t think it will change the opinion of a lot of people, I think people stick to their beliefs,” Zehner said. “With everything we’ve been through, I think everyone needs to come together and really think about doing this.”
Zehner said that initially she did not want to get the vaccine, but because she works in the healthcare industry and takes care of her disabled parents, she said it gave her two important reasons to get the vaccine. vaccinate.
“I just think it’s really important to think about other people,” Zehner said. “There are people around us who are sick, there are people around us with cancer, there are old people around us so we really have to think of all of them. “