More choosing the shot as cases of COVID-19 soar & hospitals struggle to meet demand

Local News

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) — With a growing number of cases, hospitalizations, and deaths due to COVID-19, our region is also seeing another uptick. More people are getting vaccinated.

Numbers from the state show 461,309 vaccines have been given this month in Tennessee. Keep in mind, this month isn’t over. In July, 321,307 doses were given. If the trend continues, August has the potential to surpass January’s total at more than 531,000.

The statewide trend is also clear locally. Knox County data shows a large increase in recent weeks. 708 people got the shot on August 1. A total of 1,645 people got the shot on August 25.

Employees of three pharmacies, including Vaughn Pharmacy, reported seeing an increase in demand for the vaccine in recent weeks. Pharmacist Madison Thress credits the spread of the Delta variant, the rise in hospitalizations, and the recent FDA approval of the Pfizer vaccine.

“It’s kind of a risk versus benefit between the patient and how they feel…although they have seen some patients that are vaccinated get Covid, it seems to be a whole different level of sickness,” Thress said.

The added protection is why Kelley Mayfield is thankful to be fully vaccinated today. She was originally anxious about getting the vaccine, but ultimately decided she wanted the added protection.

“We were going to visit my husband’s grandparents, his grandmothers, that we haven’t seen in over a year. I just thought to protect them, and us, the best we could, the best choice was to get the vaccine,” Mayfield said.

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