Gov. Larry Hogan said Wednesday that Maryland was nearing the tipping point in its COVID-19 vaccination campaign when the number of available vaccines will soon surpass the number of unvaccinated people who are willing to get them.

“At some point soon, we are going to be shutting down mass [vaccination] sites,” said Hogan, who will tour the state-supported site at Frederick Community College on Thursday afternoon. “Everything is going to be finding those last few people, knocking on doors, calling them on the phone. ‘Hey, you need to get a vaccine.’”

Hogan made the remark during an afternoon press conference from the state house during which he unveiled the “No Arm Left Behind” initiative that seeks to vaccinate as many people as possible through measures like outreach to senior citizens, college students and corporate partnerships.

Maryland officially surpassed 4 million vaccines administered Wednesday, including more than 174,000 into the arms of Frederick County residents.

In a sign of how fast the campaign has accelerated, Hogan said it took the state 94 days to administer the first 2 million shots and just 35 additional days to double that number.

“While 4 million vaccinations is a remarkable achievement, we still have a ways to go before we can declare mission accomplished,” he said.

Almost 75,000 Frederick County residents have been fully vaccinated, which accounts for nearly 30 percent of the population. More than 100,000 county residents have received at least one dose of the vaccine.

Statewide, more than 1.6 million residents have been fully vaccinated either through two doses of the shots from Pfizer and Moderna or the single-dose Johnson & Johnson shot that has been suspended for use in the U.S. due to concerns over rare blood clots.

After participating in a call Tuesday with White House officials, Hogan said the J&J vaccine could be reauthorized for use by the Food and Drug Administration as soon as Friday.

Roughly 82 percent of Marylanders 65 and older and 55 percent of state residents 18 and older have received at least one dose of the vaccine, the governor said. Hogan announced that mass vaccination sites at the Baltimore Convention Center, the Greenbelt Metro Station and Navy-Marine Corps Memorial Stadium will no longer require appointments to get a vaccine.

Those sites join the Premium Outlets in Hagerstown, M&T Bank Stadium in Baltimore and the Wicomico Youth and Civic Center in Salisbury as mass vaccination centers that accommodate walk-up visits.

There are now 12 mass vaccination sites across Maryland, including the one at FCC, and Hogan said a 13th will open next week in Howard County at the Mall in Columbia.

“You can’t plan for how many people are going to show up. You can’t know exactly who is not going to make it to their appointment,” he said. “So far, we haven’t dropped off at all. We keep using the same number [of doses] or more, and we’re still making progress.”

That could soon change, however, as more of the unvaccinated population is resistant to getting it.

Hogan acknowledged the state will have to get creative to keep the vaccine in high demand, hence the “No Arm Left Behind” initiatives that include an expanded statewide call center to help people get a vaccine who are homebound or require transportation or technological assistance.

“Next to getting vaccinated, the most important thing you can do is to encourage all of your neighbors, coworkers, friends and family to get vaccinated as well,” Hogan said. “Research shows that people feel more comfortable getting a vaccine when they hear about the experience directly from someone they know or trust. We truly are close to that light at the end of the tunnel. Those of you who have not yet been vaccinated, please go get a vaccine as quickly as you can.”

Follow Greg Swatek on Twitter: @greg_swatek

(15) comments

bosco

OK, I'm done. When asked by Savannah Guthrie why we should mask up outside, the CDC directors best rationale was that people are still dying of covid. THAT'S THE SCIENCE!?!?

People are still dying of car crashes every year. Geeze, people, get vaccinated, burn your mask, and LIVE!

micky

Headline should be "we are entering the hunt down" point !!

bosco

So what next after the tipping point? If everybody who wants a vaccine gets it, how much longer will the emergency powers by Hogan and Gardner linger? Will they be so risk averse that they will expect everyone to mask up and distance forever?

After all, a few weeks ago the CDC director said there was no evidence that one can spread the virus after being vaccinated. So far, the science data bears that out. In the absence of data otherwise, it's time to get back to life. Let the anti-vaxers take their chances - just like with every other disease.

Or, we can wait for Hidin' Biden to give us permission to gather in our backyards on July 4th to celebrate what's left of our independence. [lol][lol][lol][lol]

shiftless88

What needs to happen next is that all the Trump supporters who are afraid to get this vaccine for reasons that have zero to do with logic, need to get their shots.

geotracker9

Quite a useless comment, there are people on both sides of the aisle that are refusing to get the vaccine.

shiftless88

Geo; sure; there are ten on one side and millions on the other. And yes, Bosco, it bothers me that Trump was the pinnacle of the Republican fall from grace. They used to be an intellectual party that respected science and logic. It bothers me that he and his enablers screwed this country up so much that it impacts all of us in a negative manner. It bothers me that my parents, both 90, have not been able to see three of their four kids for so long because this spiraled out of control due to sheer incompetence. Yes it bothers me that Trump enablers now see Fauci as unreliable but will listen to some random physician on youtube as if he is gospel. All of this impacts our entire society but the people who refuse vaccines and masks refuse to pitch in and do their part.

bosco

Doctor Fed Up GregF suffers from TDS and is prone to meaningless outbursts. So far, there is no vaccine for it.

bosco

Sorry, I meant to post that shitless suffers from TDS and is prone to meaningless outbursts. So far, there is no vaccine for it.

Doctor Fed Up GregF does as well, but he ain't here today - yet. Probably out on mask patrol

bosco

Shiftless, thanks for sharing your thoughts. I agree with a lot of what you said. The virus has been a trying time and even trying to follow the science has been a challenge. Too many flip flops and conflicting messages, so I revert back to the basics of good hygiene practices and vaccines. I also tend to question overkill procedures done for "theater" such as wiping down every contact surface when all you have to do is break the chain of contact between the surface and your nose or mouth.

And now, with the vaccine supply just about to outstrip demand, it's time to get back to living life.

If we do gather in our backyard on Independence Day, it will be to burn our masks and drink a few Coronas.

shiftless88

If TDS means continually recognizing what a horrendous person, leader and President that man was, and working to not let people forget it because I do not want another like him, then I am proud to be afflicted. He was too bad to deserve a pass, especially since he keeps hinting he might run again (which he won't, but he is still holding the party hostage).

shiftless88

bosco; what you see as "flip flopping" is simply how science proceeds. We take our best guess at first and then adapt as we learn more. A true leader would have led the country through this evolution of thinking rather than scoffing at it.

bosco

Shiftless, thanks again for sharing your views. I can honestly say I was never a big supporter of Trump the man, but of the President. He was his own worst enemy at times, but I did support his policies and was against the continued lies and attacks against him. Biden is a guy you could probably sit down and have a beer with, but is like an airport windsock and blows whichever way the wind blows.

It would be nice to have a better choice from both parties.

In the meantime, hang onto your wallet because Hidin' Biden and his handlers are coming for it. Sure, they are after the rich, but that effect trickles down and hits the people least able to take the hit.

Have a pleasant evening

geotracker9

This is a pointless comment, there are people on both sides of the political spectrum that don't want to get the vaccine.

shiftless88

To add actual numbers, about 20% of people are saying they don't want the vaccine for whatever reason. About 40% of Republicans said they don't want it. Given that we are a little less than half Republican that means that almost all the vaccine-hesitant people are Republicans.

bosco

The guy still lives in your head, doesn't he? As for the anti-vaxxers, I have little sympathy for people who won't take advantage of vaccines and would rather take their chances with the disease. But then, I'm old enough to remember kids in iron lungs and on crutches from polio.

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