Iowa now ranks 49th among states that have delivered two doses of COVID vaccine

By: - March 1, 2021 4:56 pm

The U.S. Senate passed a resolution Wednesday night to block President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate on private employers. (Photo by Parker Michels-Boyce/ For the Virginia Mercury)

Iowa continues to gain ground in administering the COVID-19 vaccine, but a slow start at the outset of the rollout means it still lags far behind other states in providing two doses of the vaccine.

As of Monday afternoon, Iowa ranked 49th among the states when measured by the percent of population to have received two doses of the vaccine. In Iowa, it is 6%, while the national average is 7.7%. Among the states, only Utah, at 5.6%, ranks lower than Iowa, according to rankings compiled by both the New York Times and the Washington Post.

State officials have not said why Iowa ranks so low by that measure, but one potential reason would be Iowa’s slow start in delivering the first shot of the vaccine to residents. That’s because the timing of the first dose dictates when the second dose can be administered.

Currently, Iowa does compare well to the other states when measured by the percentage of population to have received at least one shot of the vaccine. By that measure, only 12 states rank better than Iowa.

So far, Iowa has administered 543,027 first doses of the vaccine, covering 95.1% of the prioritized population that is eligible for the vaccine. That equates to 17.2% of the state’s overall population. At least 185,255 Iowans have been fully vaccinated.

As for the spread of the virus, Iowa reported on Monday 185 new cases of COVID-19 and, as is usual on Mondays, zero deaths. (State officials say the reporting of deaths during the weekend is often delayed.)

Over the past week, there has been an average of 545 new cases each day, which represents a decrease of 18% from the average two weeks ago, according to the New York Times.

Iowa has reported 336,600 cases of the virus and 5,472 deaths since the beginning of the pandemic.

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Clark Kauffman
Clark Kauffman

Deputy Editor Clark Kauffman has worked during the past 30 years as both an investigative reporter and editorial writer at two of Iowa’s largest newspapers, the Des Moines Register and the Quad-City Times. He has won numerous state and national awards for reporting and editorial writing. His 2004 series on prosecutorial misconduct in Iowa was named a finalist for the Pulitzer Prize for Investigative Reporting. From October 2018 through November 2019, Kauffman was an assistant ombudsman for the Iowa Office of Ombudsman, an agency that investigates citizens’ complaints of wrongdoing within state and local government agencies.