As of March 29th, more than 30% of Travis County residents have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Of those who have been vaccinated, APH director Stephanie Hayden-Howard said that 46% are white, 29% are Hispanic, 9% are Asian and 6% are African American.
Hayden-Howard said in the senior population, those older than 60, Austin Public Health has administered 53,000 first doses and 30,000 second doses.
Residents over 80 years old who still need the vaccine can call 311 and make an appointment. APH says this will help streamline the efforts on making sure they are the first to get their shot.
Hayden-Howard also says they’re continuing their efforts with their Mobile Vaccine Program, or "MVP," to help vaccinate homebound seniors. She said by partnering with Meals on Wheels, they have given out more than 1,400 doses of the shot and more than 100 seniors are fully vaccinated.
Dr. Mark Escott said he believes the vaccine is working. He said as of Monday, 149 people are admitted to the hospital, a decrease of 42% since the beginning of March. ICUs have also seen a 39% decrease since the beginning of the month, and ventilator use is down 49%.
"We're very pleased with that number. again, we're not through with this yet, we still have a lot more work to do to keep these numbers low," Escott said. "But, we are certainly pleased with how we're doing locally."
However, with more vaccines becoming available and the city and county seeing trends in the right direction, Escott says April will be a critical month, starting with many people spending time with their families during the Easter weekend.
"April is going to be a critical month for us," Escott said. "If we hunker down and continue to do those things and not take too much risk, then May, June, July, summer looks way better."
Austin Public Health also said that their testing and registration site will go offline at 7 p.m. on Tuesday as the site begins upgrades. The site is expected to be back online by Thursday as new vaccine registration appointments become available.