The newly eligible group of tweens and teens have turned out for the COVID-19 vaccine so far. With 14% of the Bexar County population aged 12-15 having received at least one dose.
The newly eligible group of tweens and teens have turned out for the COVID-19 vaccine so far. With 14% of the Bexar County population aged 12-15 having received at least one dose. Credit: Nick Wagner / San Antonio Report

More than 1 million Bexar County residents have had at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. That’s more than half of the county’s overall population.

With 1,008,521 residents vaccinated with one dose, the county is on course to have fully vaccinated more than 60% of those aged 12 or older in a few weeks.

Bexar County and other Texas locales have benefited from a quicker-than-expected rollout among adolescents. More than 16,000 children aged 12 to 15 have been vaccinated in the county, accounting for 14% of that population, said Rita Espinoza, the San Antonio Metropolitan Health District’s chief of epidemiology.

“We are encouraged that we’ll see that group continue to get vaccinated,” Espinoza said. “We’ve worked a lot with the school districts and other entities that serve that population, so I think we will see more and more of those children get vaccinated.”

More on the rush to vaccinate schoolchildren

  • Bexar County schools are encouraging their students to get the shot before summer school begins – when a State-issued ban on mask mandates goes into effect. Reporter Brooke Crum spoke to local teens who were among the first to get vaccinated: “I’m happy,” said 13-year-old Mia Lopez. “At last, I’m vaccinated.” Read more »
  • Just days after federal approval for 12-to-15-year-olds was granted, about 6% of Texas children in that age group got a dose of the Pfizer vaccine. Read more from the Texas Tribune »

That age group may be especially interested in the latest incentive public health officials are offering upon getting the shot. Six Flags Fiesta Texas announced a partnership with Metro Health on Monday to offer 20,000 one-day tickets to the amusement park to anyone who gets vaccinated at any Metro Health or partner vaccine clinic.

Starting on Tuesday, anyone who gets vaccinated at Metro Health’s drive-thru clinic at the Alamodome will get a complimentary theme park ticket. Other sites include University Health, UT Health San Antonio, the University of the Incarnate Word, WellMed, the San Antonio Fire Department, and Bexar County Health Collaborative and Curative.

On Monday, officials reported that the county’s coronavirus positivity rate has fallen to its lowest-ever percentage. Of the nearly 48,000 residents tested for COVID-19 last week, 1.3% tested positive, a whole percentage point lower than last week’s rate of 2.3%.

JJ Velasquez

JJ Velasquez is the San Antonio Report's audience engagement editor.