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All adults eligible for vaccine

Gov. Roy Cooper and North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mandy K. Cohen gave an update Tuesday on the state’s current data, trends and vaccination progress. Wednesday marked the opening of vaccine eligibility for Group 5. This means anyone 16 years and older who wants a COVID-19 vaccination is eligible to get one.

“We remain focused on getting people vaccinated as quickly and as equitably as possible and continuing to slow the spread of the virus,” Cooper said. “The more people we vaccinate, the more we can safely do.”

The Beaufort County Health department has vaccination appointments available for Moderna doses as early as this week. Moderna has been approved for those 18 years and older only, so 16- and 17-year-olds can’t make an appointment with the health department, but they can make appointments with any provider that carries the Pfizer vaccine.

To see a list of local vaccine providers and their contact information, visit https://tinyurl.com/2cx889k2.

To date, the state has administered over 5.2 million doses. 39% of those 18 and up are at least partially vaccinated, and 26% of those 18 and up have been fully vaccinated.

“These tested, safe and effective COVID-19 vaccines will help us get back in control of our lives and back to the people and places we love – like safely hugging a grandmother, traveling to see vaccinated family or friends, or having a potluck dinner with your vaccinated neighbors,” said Secretary Cohen.

In Beaufort County, 15,892 residents — or 34% of the county’s population — had been at least partially vaccinated as of Monday. Of that group, 11,863 had completed their vaccine series.

Health Director Jim Madson is aiming for a county vaccination rate of 50%. He says a comfortable level of herd immunity should be achieved at that point.