Brooklyn and the Bronx Trail the Rest of New York State with the Worst Vaccination Rates; Black and Latino Vaccination Rates Lag Far Behind

As of April 21st, the three counties in New York State with the lowest rates of residents fully vaccinated are Brooklyn, the Bronx, and Orleans County (p.40,000), at 21% of their residents. This is the broadest measure of the population, everyone age 0 and up. There are 62 counties in the State. Brooklyn also has the lowest percentage of residents age 65 and up fully vaccinated in the entire State, at 44%. The data are taken from a Washington Post table from April 21st, 2021, with the source cited as the Center for Disease Control. Vaccination numbers change every day so the numbers cited in this article all come from Federal, State, and NYC data as of April 21st, 2021.

Here are the ten counties in New York with the lowest rates of residents fully vaccinated. The far left number is all residents; the middle number, age 18 and up, the far right number age 65 and up:

It has already been widely reported that vaccination rates for Blacks and Latinos in New York City have lagged behind rates for whites and Asians. Here is the status of New York City’s vaccination rates as of April 21st, 2021, taken from the NYC DOH vaccination tracker. The criteria for vaccination differs from the above table; here the rates are for persons who have had at least one dose, age 18 and up. 49% of all City residents in this category have received at least one dose, but rates vary widely by demographic groups and by borough:

The current data show that vaccination rates for Blacks and Latinos are far behind whites and Asians in the City. The percentage of Blacks age 18 and up who have at least one dose is 26%; for Latinos, 31%, for whites 44%, and for Asians 59%. Rates for Bronx and Brooklyn residents, at 40% and 44%, also lag behind the rest of the City, compared to 49% for Staten Island, 51% for Queens, and 59% for Manhattan. Among older residents, Brooklyn once again has the lowest vaccination rate for persons with one dose, at 60% for persons age 65-74, compared to 68% Citywide and 75% in Manhattan.

CDC’s COVID-19 vaccine tracker, as of April 21st, shows the following:

At Lst One DoseFully Vacc.
Persons Vaccinated134.4487.59
% of Total Pop.40.5%26.40%
Age 18 and Up133.187.25
% Age 18 and Up51.50%33.80%
Age 65 and Up44.0635.87
% Age 65 and Up80.60%65.60%

For the nation as a whole, 40.5% of the overall population has received at least one dose; 26.4% are fully vaccinated. For persons 18 and over, 51.5% have received at least one dose, and 33.8% are fully vaccinated. For persons age 65 and up, nearly 81% have received at least one dose, and 65.6% are fully vaccinated. New York State as a whole is doing better than the nation in the percentage of persons age 16 and up having received at least one dose- 53.9%, compared to 51.5 % nationally, age 18 and up, according to the Washington Post tracker.

New York City and its boroughs also fare poorly compared to vaccination rates across New York State and its regions. This table, taken from the New York State Department of Health’s vaccine tracker for April 21st, 2021, shows the percentage of the overall population with one dose, and percentage complete, for the regions, and percentages for one dose for the individual boroughs in the City:

% One Dose% Complete
Capitol Region47.634.3Queens43.6
Cent NY45.133.3Bronx31.7
Finger Lakes43.931.9New York52.5
Long Island45.431.3Staten Island39.7
Mohawk Valley38.829.9
North Country4133.5
Sthrn Tier41.130.1
Western NY42.730.2

The City’s overall vaccination rate lags about two percentage points behind the State’s overall rate ( in which NYC is averaged in), at 40.5% versus 42.6%. The Bronx rate is 31.7%, and Brooklyn is 35.2%, nearly eleven and more than seven points behind the State overall rate. Only one region of the State, the Mohawk Valley, has a lower overall vaccination rate than New York City.

I am sure that the City and State governments are trying to get the vaccine into the arms of the State’s residents as quickly as they can, and are making strenuous efforts to reach the minority populations of the State ( the minority populations are majorities in New York City). But the stubborn facts presented here show that these efforts to reach the Black and Latino populations, and the elderly populations, are simply not that successful so far.

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