By AlaskaWatchman.com

While vaccination rates are slowly creeping up across Alaska, certain populations remain far more resistant about getting a COVID shot.

According to a new report from the Alaska Dept. of Health & Social Services, 49.2% of Alaskans over age 16 have received at least one dose of the COVID vaccine. That figure is boosted by some areas such as Southeast and interior villages where residents are far more open to the experimental vaccines.

In other areas, such as the Mat-Su, Fairbanks and Kenai, large majorities have not had a shot.

Gov. Mike Dunleavy has made it clear that he will not mandate COVID shots, nor will he require any proof of vaccination in order for Alaskans or others to freely travel across the state. Despite his stance on the statewide level, certain businesses are now mandating that employees or patrons get vaccinated.

While state health officials continue to pressure Alaskans to get the vaccine, statewide transmission and daily case rates have decreased between April 18-24, even in areas where few are vaccinated such as the Mat-Su Valley where two out of every three people have not had a single dose of the vaccine.

Overall, Alaska saw a 3.5% decrease in reported COVID cases last week with 1,090 total cases. There were just 37 people hospitalized with COVID, statewide, and five who needed a ventilator.

According to the latest numbers from the CDC, 43% of all Americans over age 18 have at least one COVID shot.

PERCENTAGE OF PEOPLE WITH AT LEAST ONE COVID SHOT (April 18-24)

  • Southeast Fairbanks: 28.4%
  • Mat-Su: 33.6%
  • North Slope: 34.2%
  • Fairbanks: 40.1%
  • Kenai: 41.4%
  • Prince of Wales-Hyder: 46.3%
  • Chugach-Copper River: 49.6%
  • Dillingham: 50.1%
  • Anchorage: 52.8%
  • Denali Borough: 53%
  • Aleutians West: 53.1%
  • Ketchikan: 55.5%
  • NW Arctic Borough: 55.7%
  • Wrangell: 56.6%
  • Aleutians East: 56.7%
  • Kodiak: 59.8%
  • Bristol Bay plus Lake & Peninsula: 63.7%
  • Haines Borough: 66.3%
  • Bethel Census Area: 68.7%
  • Sitka: 69%
  • Juneau: 69.4%
  • Kusilvak: 69.4%
  • Yukon Koyukuk: 69.6%
  • Yakutat/Hoonah-Angoon: 71.2%
  • Nome: 72.1%
  • Petersburg: 72.9%
  • Skagway: 78.2%

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Mat-Su residents remain far less inclined to get the COVID shot

Joel Davidson
Joel is Editor-in-Chief of the Alaska Watchman. Joel is an award winning journalist and has been reporting for over 20 years, He is a proud father of 8 children, and lives in Palmer, Alaska.