Titus County COVID-19 vaccination rates are up

Updated: May. 13, 2021 at 5:21 PM CDT
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TITUS, Texas (KLTV) - One East Texas county has gotten its percentage of ‘vaccinated citizens’ significantly up in the last 3 weeks using a resourceful approach.

In past weeks, Mount Pleasant in Titus County has lagged behind the state percentage in its vaccination rate.

With plenty of vaccine on hand, staff at Titus Regional Medical Center were not seeing the numbers of citizens getting the shots that they hoped for.

“We were very disappointed. This region especially Titus county and Mount Pleasant has been hit hard by COVID-19 over the last 16 months. Over the last 6 weeks Northeast Texas began to fall behind the state in people getting one shot of the vaccine,” says medical center CEO Terry Scoggin.

Three weeks ago only 21-percent of the county’s citizens had received the vaccine.

But Scoggin came up with a process he calls ‘trusted voices’.

“Our physicians are trusted voices in the community. In addition we’ve used other trusted voices, which is our religious leaders, employers, other groups,” he says.

Utilizing churches and civic leaders, the aim was to help residents overcome any fears or doubts they had about the vaccine.

Within a 4-week period the effort began to pay off, as the vaccination numbers began to rise.

Today vaccinations are up to 35% and they’re opening up to younger ages.

“We’ll open it up to 12. Maybe over the next several months we’ll open it up to age 6 maybe age 2. We know that pediatric patients have not been as effected. They can however often be spreaders of this disease,” says Doctor Michael Henry, a pediatrician on staff.

And they hope the rise in vaccination rate continues.

“This has been a community wide effort, with our county officials, our city officials and our hospital district. We’re on our way, and this is going to be a long process,” Scoggin says.

A walk-in vaccination clinic is set up at Titus Regional Medical Center Monday through Thursday, from 7:30 am to 1:30 pm.

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