Coronavirus, COVID vaccine

GREAT FALLS, Mont. - The Cascade City-County Health Department (CCHD) says they are seeing some people who are not coming back for their second doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.

Ben Spencer with the CCHD tells Montana Right Now of the 27,134 people who have gotten at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, 5,292 have not received their second vaccine, excluding those who received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Of those who have not received  their second dose:

  • 2,592 of those are scheduled to receive their second vaccination, but not enough time has elapsed since the first dose (21 days for Pfizer, 28 days for Moderna)

  • 1,307 missed their second appointment, but less than 6 weeks have passed since their scheduled return date

  • 1,393 missed their second appointment, and more than 6 weeks have passed since their scheduled return date

Spencer says there are other factors that can skew the data, like people receiving their first and second doses in different states or people with multiple vaccination record files due to name variations and other similar oversights, but this gives a good idea of the trends in Cascade County.

“Some of those people were not available on the exact date 21 or 28 days (Pfizer or Moderna, respectively) after their first dose and will reschedule their appointment. In theory, the efficacy rates should begin to drop the longer someone waits after their 21/28 days, but there is not yet sufficient data to quantify that drop-off,” Spencer wrote.

While CCHD is encouraging people to get their second dose as close as possible to the 21 or 28 day recommended return date, even if you can’t make it on the exact date, late is better than never.

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