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Vaccine hesitancy continues in West Michigan

The Kent County Health Department continues to administer doses but at a slower rate.

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — While the demand for vaccines has decreased in recent weeks, Steve Kelso with the Kent County Health Department says it still continues to administer doses every day — just at a slower rate.

According to the New York Times, the state is unlikely to reach the Biden Administration's goal of 70% of adults getting at least one dose of vaccine by July 4, unless things change.

Kelso says vaccine hesitancy is occurring in pockets across the community here in West Michigan for different reasons.

A study by the University of Michigan points to a long-standing mistrust in public institutions and mistreatment of marginalized groups.

The health department says it's been trying to address those concerns since the vaccine first rolled out.

But there's something we can all do to help.

"Here's your challenge, if you've had the vaccine, you're job isn't done. Please talk to one of your neighbors who tells you that they're hesitant, " Kelso said. "Get them to take the vaccine. Get them to talk to their doctor. I really would encourage people to talk to their personal care physician about their hesitancy to get the vaccine."

In Michigan, nearly 60% of the population, ages 16 and older have had at least one dose of the vaccine

According to the latest data posted on the Vaccinate West Michigan dashboard, around 50% of the population have been fully vaccinated in Kent County.

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