Strong start, but hardly a vaccine victory in North Dakota

Local News

Corrine Bakken, 93, of West Fargo, becomes the first patient of the state’s largest private hospital, Sanford Health, to receive the COVID-10 vaccine on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2021, in Fargo, N.D. The coronavirus forced Bakken to retire from her job as a special needs paraprofessional and says she wants to be vaccinated to see her children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren. After the shot she said, “Now I can live to be 100.” (AP Photo/Sanford Health)

FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Older residents and health care workers have kick-started the COVID-19 vaccine rollout in North Dakota. But many health officials worry that turning out younger and healthier adults will be a more difficult chore.

The state has started soft selling via social media and word of mouth emphasizing the safety of the vaccine and the importance of a strong turnout in thwarting the virus.

Molly Howell, the North Dakota Department of Health immunization program director, says the campaign will be ramped up once more vaccine is available and more people become eligible for shots.

She says they will focus on dispelling a wide variety of misinformation about vaccines and taking politics out of the equation.

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