Even if COVID-19 vaccines were available for everyone and open to everyone, almost three of every 10 Brazoria County residents would choose to refuse the necessary injections. That’s according to an ongoing study that started in April 2020.
The study, conducted by the Delphi Group for Carnegie Mellon University’s COVIDcast project, showed as of Wednesday, 71.9 percent of county residents would definitely or probably choose to receive the vaccine. That’s notably below the level President Joe Biden’s chief medical adviser, Dr. Anthony Fauci, pegged as the level required for some measure of normalcy to return to society without serious risk of further viral spread.
Fauci said last year that vaccination levels need to reach around 80 percent to protect even people vulnerable to the virus who weren’t vaccinated.
Nearby, only 68.3 percent of Galveston County residents would opt to take the vaccine when it becomes available. Matagorda and Wharton counties showed even lower numbers — the study grouped them in with most of the rest of the counties in Texas, which averaged out to 61.5 percent acceptance among those 5.95 million people.
Meanwhile, 77.7 percent of Fort Bend County residents and 73.5 percent of Harris County residents would choose to take the vaccine.
The online map can be found at delphi.cmu.edu/covidcast.
Brazoria County reported 296 new cases Friday, and one COVID-related death— a Lake Jackson man in his 70s. He’s the county’s 246th COVID fatality.
Among the new cases are 101 probable, along with 45 recoveries. Three cases were transferred out of the county, and 35 of the 296 cases are from tests administered more than two weeks old.
Pearland had the most cases, with 69, followed by Lake Jackson (24) and Alvin (23). Angleton and Clute both had 14, there were 12 in Freeport, 10 in Manvel, seven in Brazoria, five each in Iowa Colony and West Columbia, three in Richwood, two in Danbury, and one each in Bonney, Brookside Village, Damon, Holiday Lakes, Liverpool, Oyster Creek and Sweeny.
People aged 10 to 19 reported the most cases with 34, followed by people in their 30s (32), people in their 40s (31), those in their 20s (28) and people in their 50s (27). There were 15 cases each among children 9 and younger, and those in their 60s. People in their 70s reported nine cases, and there were four cases among people 80 and older.
Probable cases are people who are exhibiting COVID symptoms and are linked to others who have tested positive for the novel coronavirus, usually by living in the same household, as well as those for which antigen tests have provided “presumptive laboratory evidence” of infection, no matter whether the person qualifies as a close contact.
For most people, the coronavirus causes mild or moderate symptoms, such as fever and cough that clear up in two to three weeks. For some, especially older adults and people with existing health problems, it can cause more severe illness, including pneumonia and death. The vast majority of people recover.