State officials say they don’t have data yet on how many Minnesota health care workers are refusing to be vaccinated against COVID. Health Commissioner Jan Malcolm says what she’s hearing from health systems is, “For those that aren’t taking it, it’s not a refusal to ever take it. It’s a desire to take it later, either because they perceive that they’re at low risk and want to make it available to others first, or because they want to see how it goes in the first weeks of vaccination.”
And Malcolm says small amounts of COVID vaccine are sitting unused in some parts of Minnesota, because highest-priority people in those areas have already been vaccinated. They’re urging providers to make unused doses available to broader groups, including those age 65 and older. But Malcolm stresses there are still far more Minnesotans eligible for the first round of vaccinations than doses available from the federal government.