INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana health officials have counted about 62,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines being tossed out in recent months as the number of people seeking the shots has fallen drastically.
That is a small portion of the some 6 million vaccine shots that have been given in Indiana since they first became available in December, but a sign of the struggle that officials face in raising the state’s vaccination rate.
The state health department said vaccine doses can go unused by reaching their expiration date or a vial breaking. The department said it was continuing to encourage those giving shots to use soon-to-expire vaccine first to minimize any waste.
About 45% of Indiana residents are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, the 16th lowest rate among the states, according to the Centers for Disease Control.
Indiana’s vaccination rate has fallen from about 50,000 a day in April to about 10,000 a day in recent weeks. The state health department reported Indiana hospitals were treating 1,654 COVID-19 patients on Wednesday — quadruple the number from mid-July.