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The number of Minnesota counties with a 70% vaccination rate hasn't budged in weeks

The figure remains stubbornly unchanged since late June.

For a while, Bring Me The News was regularly checking in on county-by-county vaccination rates. We last did one one June 24, and at the time, 10 counties had hit the target threshold of a 70% adult vaccination rate (meaning the percentage of individuals age 16 and up with at least one shot).

Since that time, no new counties have reached that mark — and a couple actually dropped back below it.

Related: Number of MN counties with high or substantial COVID transmission hits 64

According to the state's COVID vaccine dashboard as of Aug. 6, there are now eight Minnesota counties with a 70% adult vaccination rate. They are, in descending order:

  1. Olmsted — 82,,3%
  2. Cook — 81.5%
  3. Hennepin — 78%
  4. Washington — 78.1%
  5. Ramsey — 74%
  6. Scott — 74%
  7. Dakota — 77.2%
  8. Carver — 77.2%

Lake is a hair's width away at 69.8%.

Two counties that had previously crossed 70% in late June have since dropped down below that line: Carlton is at 68.3%, and Houston is at 67.7%. Both were above 70% on June 24.

How did they go backwards?

A spokesperson for the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) said it has to do with double-checking residency information. A few weeks ago the department did some data clean-up and geocoding updates, looking at instances where a vaccine recipient was assigned to the wrong county.

This could have been because of incorrect information from a vaccine provider, the spokesperson said, or an instance where a person's home ZIP code crosses county lines.

This clean-up resulted in some counties' vaccination rates being adjusted.

Related: More than 11K Minnesotans signed up for $100 COVID incentive on Day 1

It did not, however, impact statewide vaccination figures, since the overall number did not change — only the county of residence for some vaccine recipients. 

The statewide 16+ vaccination rate is 69.4%, with 3,060,725 people reported to have at least one dose, and 2,906,890 having completed the series (65.9%).

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