COLUMBIA- Missouri ranks 50th out of 50 states for vaccine rollout, and 4% of the Missouri population has been vaccinated with one dose, according to the New York Times.
About 18.5 million people have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine throughout the United States, and about 3.2 million people had been fully vaccinated, according to the Center for Disease Control and Protection's data tracker.
Providers in Missouri have administered just over 317,700 of the 661,400 doses that were distributed.
In comparison to other states, 4.4% of the Illinois population received the first dose of the vaccine, which ranks the state at 45th, according to the CDC.
Alaska is ranked at the top of the list with 10.7% of their population vaccinated. West Virginia, New Mexico, and Connecticut also ranked near the top with at least one dose administered.
Below are the total doses administered and reported to the CDC for every 100,000 people in Missouri, as of Monday:
- Total Vaccines Distributed: 661,400
- Total Doses Administered: 317,737
- People Receiving 1 or More Doses: 242,937
- People Receiving 2 or More Doses: 73,240
Lisa Cox, Communications Director for the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services, says a large amount of the distributed vaccine sits with the federal pharmacy partnership.
"To date, unfortunately, the federal partnership has administered only 17% of those shots. 332,000 doses have been allocated to this program with CVS and Walgreens. Of those 211,400 doses have been ordered by the participating pharmacies, and 56,498 doses have been administered in 920 clinics throughout the state, based on their reporting," Cox said in an emailed statement to KOMU 8 News.
Cox also said DHSS has also become aware that some of Missouri's vaccinators "have not been administering as efficiently as they have been asking." State-enrolled vaccinators in Missouri have administered over 60% of the doses shipped into the state for their use.
Residents in Boone County expressed their concerns to KOMU 8 News.
"I live in Columbia and was embarrassed to call myself a Missourian when I found out on national news that we are ranked last in vaccine distribution," resident Nancy Moen said.
Moen and her husband are registered to take the vaccine in Boone County and are considered high-risk because they are in the elderly population, but she is concerned their vaccine appointment will be delayed because of supply.
"This appears to be a dismal failure on the part of the state. And as a citizen, I want to know why this happened in Missouri, how it happened and who's in charge of this massive failure," Moen said.
Last week at his weekly press briefing, Governor Mike Parson announced he would deploy the Missouri National Guard to help with mass vaccination sites across the state.
Parson said he and his wife plan on taking the vaccine but have not yet done so.
"Right now, there's a lot more people out there in that range, and that their priorities matter more than me. And I get the idea of being governor and how important that is, but I've also talked to Dr. Williams, I know what the medical staff says, that I've had it before and what the risks are," Parson said.
Gov. Parson said he does not know of any new legislature regarding the vaccine. The state plans to stick to their original vaccination plan, which was submitted in October to the CDC.
"We have a plan in place and are going to have to execute that and everybody's just gonna have to wait that time to come up," Gov. Parson said.
Parson also addressed working with the new Biden administration on vaccine distribution.
"I want every president, no matter who they are, no matter what the circumstances, I want the president of United States to do well, because if he does, well, the country does well. That's what's important for me that they put the country before themselves. So as far as my administration goes, with different day one, we put Missourians first," Gov. Parson said.
Reporting vaccine distribution has been difficult for local health departments. according to previous KOMU 8 reporting.
Columbia/Boone County Public Health and Human Services Community Relations Specialist Sara Humm said Boone County is experiencing a lack of vaccine supply, so it cannot start Phase 1B - Tier 2, like the state did last Monday.
"If we don't have the vaccine, that means we can't give people their doses. And so that's been a consistent problem since the rollout of the vaccine has started," Humm said.
She also said the department is not surprised with the ranking.
"Obviously, it doesn't feel great to be in the bottom. But as far as the struggles we've had here in Boone County and getting vaccine, it's not exactly a surprise," Humm said. "It obviously makes it really difficult when it comes to making sure that our communities get vaccinated, as if we don't even have the supply, we're not even able to vaccinate them."
PHHS encourages everyone to sign up for emails via a survey so they can stay updated on the vaccine.
"With the lack of supply of vaccine, we know that that's going a lot slower than most people would like. And so we just asked for people's patience and understanding," she added.