DHS: 1M WI residents have completed their COVID-19 vaccine series

More than 1 million Wisconsin residents have completed their COVID-19 vaccine series -- meaning they have received both doses of the two-dose vaccines -- with another 700,000 having received at least one dose. That is according to the online reporting of the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS)

Wisconsin has administered just over 93% of vaccine doses received, per the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention -- ranking number one among all states.

The two-dose COVID-19 vaccine number represents nearly 18% of the population 16 and older. The state website also shows 2.7 million total doses of the vaccine have been administered.

"We’re moving forward with great aggressiveness and great joy," said Gov. Tony Evers.

Wisconsin began vaccinations about three and a half months ago, averaging a couple thousand doses daily over a week's time. With larger sites like the Wisconsin Center available, the seven-day average is above 50,000 shots a day, with the state looking to build on that momentum.

"This is incredible progress in a little over three months made possible thanks to the increased in vaccine supply we've received from the federal government, the hard work of our network of vaccinators across the state and the willingness of the people of Wisconsin to step up and be vaccinated," said Julie Willems Van Dijk with DHS.

Gov. Tony Evers

Gov. Tony Evers

During a stop in Milwaukee on Monday, the governor called the milestone great news. He also outlined strategies underway to get another 1 million people vaccinated.

"One is to get the vaccine to people as close to home as possible, in the neighborhoods and so on and so forth," Evers said. "But at the end of the day, it’s about the local validators, and whether it’s a local minister or local community leader, that’s who we’re encouraging to step up."

COVID-19 vaccine

"I think if you told me back in October that we would be here at this point, I’d say that’s very optimistic, so really thankful and excited about it," said Dr. Matt Anderson of UW Health.

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Dr. Anderson said the average person who has been vaccinated can also play a major role in encouraging others who may be on the fence to do the same when it is their turn.

COVID-19 vaccine

"Talk to your neighbors, your friends, your family. Share your experience," Anderson said. "I think there’s power in people understanding seeing people that they know who have had an experience and that the experience has gone well."

The state says 1.7 million Wisconsinites have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. That is roughly 30% of the population 16 and older.

Willems Van Dijk said herd immunity is still possible by summer.

"I have said before that we could vaccinate 80% of the adults by Fourth of July, and that is very realistic," she said. "However, that means 80% of adults have to keep raising their hand and say, 'We want to get vaccine now.'"

Assembly Democratic Leader Gordon Hintz (D-Oshkosh) issued the following statement:

"The news that 1 million Wisconsinites are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19 is remarkable. I applaud Governor Evers, state and local public health officials, Wisconsin’s vaccinators, and all of the community partners across the state who are working so hard to protect the health and safety of the people of Wisconsin. 

"As we continue moving forward, I encourage every Wisconsinite who can get vaccinated against COVID-19 to do so as soon as they are eligible. All three COVID-19 vaccines were developed based on decades of research and went through rigorous safety testing, so we know they are safe and effective. By getting vaccinated, we can help protect the vulnerable members of our community and get back to our Wisconsin way of life."

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Dr. Robert Citronberg, the executive medical director of infectious disease and prevention for Advocate Aurora Health joins FOX6 WakeUp with more information.