'We are on a roll': Vaccination data improves as more become eligible

’We are on a roll’: Vaccination data improves as more become eligible

MADISON, Wis. (CBS 58)  -- Wisconsin is starting to catch up with other Midwestern states in administering the COVID-19 vaccine, after weeks of ranking one of the worst.

Data by the CDC ranks Wisconsin 29th out of the number of people vaccinated per 100K. Last week it reached as low as 44th. 

Julie Willems Van Dijk, deputy secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, said the improvement is a collaborative effort, including opening up eligibility to 65-year-olds and up, a slight increase in supply and health care providers using up their inventory.

“We are on a roll, we are moving forward,” said Willem Van Dijk. “We promised we would and we are there.”

The number of Moderna vaccines distributed to the state also increased about 18%, according to Willem Van Dijk. That rate should remain the same for the next two weeks, which is helping boost vaccinations. 

For weeks, the state lagged behind other Midwestern states and nationally, and health care professionals admit it was off to a slow start.

“I do think it’s taken us some time,” said Dr. Matt Anderson, senior medical director at UW Health. “I think we need more information further in advance as to when we can expect vaccines and we need to think about how we distribute those to make sure that distribution goes out as equitable as possible.”

While the state is making strides, Willem Van Dijk said the CDC data is outdated, about 3-4 days old. The discrepancy between the two is that Wisconsin has vaccinated about 65,000 more doses than the CDC reports. Health officials said they are working with the CDC to provide up-to-date vaccination data. 

“We are glad the work here in Wisconsin will soon be getting better recognition,” said Willem Van Dijk. “The best place for accurate, up-to-date information on vaccine information is on the DHS data page.”

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