End of pandemic in sight – Garza says area could be vaccinated by July

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ST. LOUIS – The head of the St. Louis Metropolitan Pandemic Task Force says the end of the pandemic is in sight. Dr. Alex Garza said Wednesday the region is making significant progress on getting people vaccinated and keeping the number of COVID cases low.

Dr. Garza also said data shows that 75% of the St. Louis area can be vaccinated by the end of July, as long as the rate of vaccinations doesn’t fluctuate too much. He said it will take a little longer for the entire Region C but it could be done by the end of August.

This comes as the local health care systems report only 23 hospital admissions in today’s data. That’s the lowest daily number since Sept. 21, 2020.

Garza stressed people still need to take precautions as work is underway to vaccinate more people.

More people will become eligible to receive the vaccine in Missouri on March 15. The focus must still be on those who are the most vulnerable to receive the shots. That includes people over 65 years of age and those with underlying conditions.

“We’re making some significant progress with vaccinations and hospitalizations but we’re still not finished with the pandemic,” Garza said. “The federal government is projecting you may have heard that there will be enough vaccine for every adult that wants one by May and we are looking forward to the day when will have supply that meets demand and that’s just a few months from now. So, you can say that the end of the pandemic is in sight but we still have a ways to go.”

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