Efforts continue to get people vaccinated against COVID-19, with New Hampshire lagging behind Maine, where some local towns have vaccinated nearly 100% of eligible residents.
Maine reported As of Wednesday, it had vaccinated 874,500 people, or 73.84% of the state’s nearly 1.2 million eligible residents and 65.06% of all residents (over 1.3 million).
New Hampshire reported As of Wednesday, 54.3% of New Hampshire residents are fully immunized and 61.6% have received at least one injection. A total of 761,285 New Hampshire residents are fully immunized and 839,185 have received at least one dose. The New Hampshire Vaccine Dashboard does not offer a breakdown of the percentage of eligible residents who have been vaccinated.
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Children under 12 remain ineligible for COVID-19 vaccines, although the FDA is expected to approve vaccines for young children in the coming weeks.
Almost all local towns in Maine are 75% or more vaccinated, including York (89%), Eliot (81%), Kittery (78%) and South Berwick (75%), which all follow Kennebunks and Wells, which are 99%, according to estimated state figures.
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Exeter and Newington had the highest overall vaccination rate for communities in the greater Seacoast area of New Hampshire, with both at nearly 80%. New Castle was third with 73%. Dover was at 62%, the highest in the Tri-Cities region. The prices do not take into account the number of children living in each city. Cities with older populations are more likely to have higher vaccination rates.
Farmington (39.5%) and Seabrook (40.1%) were at the bottom of the vaccination list locally.
Durham is listed at 29.8%, the lowest in the region, but city administrator Todd Selig said that statistic is misleading because University of New Hampshire students typically listed the address of the their parents’ home during vaccination. More than 70% of the city’s full-time population is vaccinated, he said, citing conversations he has had with state health officials.
Seacoast NH vaccination rate by city
Exeter: 79.8%, with 12,266 vaccinated, 15,358 residents
Newington: 79%, 632 vaccinated, 799 residents
New castle: 73.4%, 709 vaccinated, 966 residents
Rye: 67%, 3,660 vaccinated, 5,470 residents
Stratham: 63.9%, 4,827 vaccinated, 7,547 residents
Portsmouth: 63%, with 14,065 vaccinated, 22,171 residents
Dover: 62%, 19,951 vaccinated, 32,228 residents
Madbury: 62%, 1,168 vaccinated, 1,871 residents
Greenland: 61%, 2,553 vaccinated, 4,139 residents
Hampton: 60.7%, with 9,218 vaccinated, 15,183 residents
New fields: 60.5%, 1,042 vaccinated, 1,720 residents
Lee: 59.6%, 2,711 vaccinated, 4,544 residents
Hampton North: 58%, with 2,661 vaccinated, 4,575 residents
Somersworth: 56.3%, 6,764 vaccinated, 12,005 residents
Brentwood: 56%, 2,580 vaccinated, 4,603 residents
New market: 55.7%, 5,264 vaccinated, 9,445 residents
Barrington: 54.7%, 5,061 vaccinated, 9,247 residents
Kensington: 54%, 1,159 vaccinated, 2,143 residents
Hampton Falls: 53%, 1,290 vaccinated, 2,424 residents
Epping: 50.9%, 3,576 vaccinated, 7,020 residents
Kingston East: 50%, 1,211 vaccinated, 2,420 residents
Rochester: 49%, 15,468 vaccinated, 31,414 residents
Stream: 40.1%, 3,571 vaccinated, 8,890 residents
Farmington: 39.5%, 2,759 vaccinated, 6,977 residents
Durham: 29.8%, 4,861 vaccinated, 16,304 residents (many UNH students report parents’ addresses for vaccinations, giving the city a lower percentage)
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Cape Neddick: 93%
Berwick North: 82%
Berwick South: 75%
A doctor’s perspective on the politicization of vaccines
“It is the most controversial and politicized vaccine,” said Dr David Itkin, an infectious disease expert at Portsmouth Regional Hospital. “What matters is for those who choose not to be vaccinated, they are just rolling the dice and hoping they don’t catch COVID.”
Itkin said the Seacoast sees the same factors here as to why some people are not getting vaccinated as is happening nationwide.
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“People always question safety. That’s for sure,” he said. “They say they want more data. There is a lot of data. They question the side effects that are so rare, and COVID is worse.”
Itkin said some media reports of revolutionary cases add to the misinformation circulating.
“There will be breakthrough cases because no vaccine is 100% effective,” he said. “These are not people sick enough to require hospitalization. People have to stop talking about politics. It’s about public health, getting ahead.”