For immediate release: December 14, 2021 (21-247)Spanish
Contact: DOH Communications
Public inquiries: State COVID-19 Information Hotline, 1-800-525-0127
DOH commemorates one year of COVID-19 vaccines in Washington
Since Dec. 2020, more than 11 million doses of vaccine have been given out across the state
OLYMPIA – One year ago today, the first COVID-19 vaccine shipment arrived in Washington. Since then, more than 11.3 million doses of vaccine have been administered across the state and more than 5.4 million Washingtonians have received at least one dose. These remarkable milestones could not have been achieved without the hard work and dedication of health care workers, public health providers, first responders, community members, and countless others who have protected our communities by giving out life-saving vaccines.
“It is amazing to see how far we have come in just one year,” said Umair A. Shah, MD, MPH, Secretary of Health. “From mass vaccination sites, to public-private partnerships through the Vaccine Action Command and Coordination System (VACCS) Center, mobile vaccination efforts through Care-a-Van, and more, it is clear this response has taken an immense amount of ingenuity and hard work. I am proud to serve as the state’s Secretary of Health and call Washington home.”
This fall, vaccine eligibility expanded to include children as young as 5. In less than six weeks, more than 158,000 children ages 5 through 11 received their first dose.
“Seeing kids as young as 5 get their COVID-19 vaccines is another great illustration of the progress that has happened over the past year,” said Michele Roberts, Acting Assistant Secretary. “As a mother, getting my daughter vaccinated was one of the highlights of my year. Vaccines are keeping children safer in the classroom, protecting them when they’re with their friends, and helping us all stay healthy as we gather with loved ones this holiday season.”
“I’m proud of how far our state has come over the past year. Getting millions of people vaccinated – and more than 1.3 million people an additional dose – is no easy feat. I want to send a heartfelt thank you to each and every person who has helped us achieve these milestones,” said Dr. Tao Sheng Kwan-Gett, Chief Science Officer. “As we head into 2022, I want to encourage everyone to get vaccinated and boosted to protect yourself, your loved ones, and our community as a whole.”
Booster doses are now recommended for everyone 16 and older six months after completing an mRNA vaccine series (Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) or two months after receiving the single shot Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine. Although most people across the state are vaccinated, more than 1.7 million eligible Washingtonians have not started their vaccination series, which puts them at higher risk of getting seriously sick, hospitalized, or dying from COVID-19.
Visit Vaccine Locator or Vaccines.gov to make an appointment today to get vaccinated. If you have questions, visit DOH’s COVID-19 Vaccine Frequently Asked Questions webpage or talk to your trusted health care provider. You can also call the state’s COVID-19 hotline at 833-VAX-HELP. Language assistance is available.