ERIE COUNTY, N.Y. (WKBW) — As the number of COVID cases in Western New York rises, vaccination rates are increasing as well.
"I think it's one of the reasons why as we're dealing with this new wave of coronavirus cases it's not as bad as it was last January and December though it's not good," Erie County Executive Mark Poloncarz said.
According to county data, around 45% of Erie County adults have received their first dose of the vaccine. 28% are fully vaccinated. Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein said you can see the direct effect of that.
"The vaccine is working. It is preventing serious illness and hospitalizations. It is also preventing death among our elderly. In March, we've seen a significant decline in deaths compared to February and January," Dr. Burstein said.
But Poloncarz said there are still specific zip codes within Erie County that have low vaccination rates.
"Buffalo has some of the lowest vaccination rates for one dose, not two doses, of all. It's disappointing to see it. The urban areas, once again, are some of the lowest," Poloncarz said.