CHICOPEE, Mass. (WWLP) – New statistics from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) show that Massachusetts ranks in the top 10 states for COVID-19 doses administered per capita.
According to the CDC, as of the last three weeks, Massachusetts ranks number one for administering first doses of COVID-19 vaccine per capita among states who have at least 5 million residents. But the numbers don’t come without skepticism in Springfield where there’s been a struggle to get residents locally vaccinated.
“That’s great [the data] but I don’t think that’s reflective of what’s happening in cities like Springfield. I think the data that we have, which is unfortunately limited, shows that,” Springfield City Councilor and Chairman of the city’s COVID-19 response committee, Jesse Lederman told 22News.
State data that the committee received shows that just 10% of Springfield residents have been vaccinated.
“In order for us to make sure we’re getting individuals vaccinated we really do need to know who has been vaccinated, where, and how many individuals in our city still need to be vaccinated,” Springfield Health and Human Services Commissioner, Helen Caulton-Harris said in a COVID-19 committee meeting last week.
The CDC reported as of this past Sunday, 22.7% of adults in the state have received at least a first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. That number is the highest percentage of residents who’ve gotten the first shot among the 24 other states with at least 5 million residents.
Lederman told 22News that Springfield has identified neighbor vaccination sites for residents only in order to increase the number of vaccinated residents, but are now waiting on the state for guidance and permission on establishing them.
“I’m concerned that while we might be ranking well in a statewide way, that because the equity provisions that the city council has been asking the governor to implement have not yet come forward that we may be seeing cities like Springfield left behind,” Lederman continued.
The CDC numbers only count the adult population due to the COVID-19 vaccines only being approved for adults right now. If you take into account the entire state population, that number goes down to 18.3%.
“The biggest concern for us right now is receiving the doses so that the residents in Springfield can get access to them,” Lederman said.
The CDC says the average for all the states ranked is 19.5%. They also said Massachusetts has the greatest per capita count of first and second doses per 100,000 residents than any other large state.
Massachusetts has only administered 9.4% of second doses to the population though. Putting the state at number 15 for second doses administered.