Fewer people registering for vaccines as supply increases, health expert says

Local News

HARLINGEN, Texas (KVEO) — COVID-19 vaccines are becoming widely available in the Rio Grande Valley. Health experts said it is now reaching a point where there are more vaccines than people signing up for them.

“What we are seeing is the demand for the vaccine is going down even as the supply increases,” said Dr. Michael Dobbs, Chief Medical Officer at UT Health RGV.

He said there use to be thousands of people registering online. Lately, those numbers have seen a decline.

“The first time we opened it for an additional 10,000 it closed in just a couple hours. The next time it took the better part of a day, this time we opened it last Friday and it’s still open,” said Dr. Dobbs.

He mentions people might not be registering because they are hesitant. While the vaccine could be stored for a period of time under the right temperatures, it’s still causing concerns. 

“It’s just over time… [if people don’t get the vaccine] vaccine doses are going to waste.”

Dr. Ivan Melendez, Health Authority for Hidalgo County, said an increase in vaccince supply is a good thing because it gives a chance for programs to be developed for distribution.

“The other thing is now we have enough vaccines, so we have special programs for people at home, for school teachers, or the programs for the Border Patrol,” said Dr. Melendez.

Around 50% of residents 16 and older in Cameron County and Hidalgo county have had at least one dose of the vaccine. To reach herd immunity, health officials urge anyone eligible for a vaccine to get one.

There are a number of sites with available doses, you can find those distribution sites here.

Copyright 2021 Nexstar Media Inc. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

More Throwback Thursday