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COVID-19 VACCINE

Unvaccinated seniors are about four times as likely to die and five times as likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 compared to vaccinated and boosted peers, the data shows
A small county in Tennessee for much of the past year has reported the highest COVID-19 vaccination rate in Tennessee and one of the highest in the South. If only it were true. The rate in Meigs County was artificially inflated by a data error that distorted most of Tennessee’s county-level vaccination rates by attributing tens of thousands of doses to the wrong counties, according to a KHN review of Tennessee’s vaccination data. When the Tennessee Department of Health quietly corrected the error last month, county rates shifted overnight, and Meigs County’s rate of fully vaccinated people dropped from 65% to 43%, which is below the state average and middling in the rural South.
A popular at-home program has ended, but saliva tests are still widely used.
“Whether you’re pro-vax or anti-vax or whatever we’re for health care freedom and we believe mandates one-size-fits-all should not be the agenda," Rep. Glenn Gruenhagen, R-Glencoe, said at a Wednesday, April 20, news conference touting the bill at the state Capitol. "You and your medical provider can decide based on your health history what is best for you.”

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Mayo Clinic vaccinologist Dr. Greg Poland says the latest data show the benefit of a second booster is real, but "fractional" and wanes fast, meaning that timing and individual health circumstances are important factors when considering a fourth shot.
The seven-day rolling average positive test rate for COVID-19 for March 17, the most recently available date for that figure, was 2.7% — a low not seen since July 2021.
For individuals forgoing vaccination, the risks can include layoffs and ineligibility to collect unemployment, higher insurance premiums, or loss of academic scholarships. For employers, vaccine hesitancy can contribute to short-staffed workplaces.
Agency finds those without a booster had a 3-4 times greater risk of hospitalization than fully vaccinated, while those who were not vaccinated at all faced 12 times the risk of hospitalization.
Minnesota is reporting significantly fewer cases of COVID-19 in a week than it did on a typical day during the January omicron wave.
Infection rates for COVID-19 have fallen considerably in the last few weeks.

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The hope for a permanent, low-level rate of the virus is one that envisions intense need for local case surveillance, isolated periods of regional masking, ongoing protection of the vulnerable, and seasonal vaccination against new variants.
Rice County is the only county in Minnesota considered high risk by the CDC as of late this week. Southeastern Minnesota also has a cluster of medium-risk counties including Olmsted.
The so-called "People's Convoy," which originated in California and has drawn participants from around the country, is calling for an end to all pandemic-related restrictions. It was inspired by demonstrations last month that paralyzed Ottawa, Canada's capital city.

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