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Encouraging the community to get vaccinated

“Even if we could prevent one death or keep one person out of the hospital. It’s worth taking...
“Even if we could prevent one death or keep one person out of the hospital. It’s worth taking those measures that might seem inconvenient to us at times.”(WBRC)
Updated: Jun. 9, 2021 at 8:21 PM CDT
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NORTH PLATTE, Neb. (KNOP) - The communities that make up the six counties that are contained within the West Central District Health Department are some of the lowest by percentage in vaccine rates, and highest in positivity rates, in not only the state but the country right now, according to published comparisons. And the WCDHD’s Executive Director Shannon Vanderheiden says she is hearing from all over the country and internationally about it.

Since the very beginning since the first reported case of COVID-19 Vanderheiden and her crew at the WCDHD, regular staff, volunteers, and the Army National Guard, have worked non-stop, hoping to educate and provide care in an ever-changing pandemic. The process, from understanding COVID-19 to ushering in a vaccine has been a long, tiring road for those involved, and they are not done yet.

And with summer activities quickly piling upon us, and a country - a world - trying to open up and get back to normal, Vanderheiden is hoping a little incentive will encourage people to flood the doors of the WCDHD’s 1225 S. Poplar, North Platte, location. She wants people to want to help their families, their neighbors, the immunocompromised, and the elderly. She wants them to help each other get the virus put in its place, and out of pandemic status.

To help her and the folks at WCDHD do that, two anonymous donors have come forward with a special incentive: two tickets for the NEBRASKAland Days concert for Luke Combs, and two tickets for Toby Keith. It is as easy as signing up to get vaccinated, and actually getting vaccinated at WCDHD between June 8 and June 21. After getting the shot, you may sign up for the tickets. Two winners will be awarded a set of tickets. The first drawing will be for Combs, and the second for Keith. Both drawings are happening at noon on June 22. The drawing will be shared Live on KNOP-TV’s Facebook page.

In the WCDHD there are 86 people who have lost their lives to COVID-19. The official cause of death listed on the death certificates is COVID-19. Nine additional lives have been lost. Those nine are still awaiting a final conclusion as to the cause of death.

The overall vaccination rate in the WCDHD is 26.45 percent as of Wednesday. The overall vaccination rate for Nebraska as a whole is 44.3 percent. The six-county break down is as follows:

  • Arthur County - 18%
  • Lincoln County - 27%
  • Thomas County - 19%
  • Hooker County - 33%
  • Logan County - 13%
  • McPherson - 11%

Vanderheiden adds that she knows there are so many great activities happening this summer, and she wants everyone to enjoy a normal summer. She is just hoping very strongly that people stay safe and healthy in the process, and that includes fighting the COVID-19 virus in any way they can. And that means, getting the vaccine.

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