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One year after start of local COVID shots at Mayo, demand for vaccine still strong

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Exactly one year after giving its first dose of COVID-19 vaccine, Mayo Clinic Health System in La Crosse is bracing for an expected increase in new cases during the holidays. 

Mayo’s local nurse administrator in charge of vaccines. Nursing coordinator for the COVID vaccine at Mayo, Ben Anderson, remembers how the demand was higher than expected even at the beginning.

“The first day, vaccinations were brought in by the state patrol,” Anderson said. “It was really an exciting day at the end of a really crummy year in health care. We were planning to give six doses that first day. We ended up giving 24 doses.”

He told WIZM the demand for the Johnson and Johnson vaccine has waned but all three brands are available to local Mayo patients.

Anderson added that the number of daily shots peaked at around 800. He estimates Mayo in La Crosse has given between 1,000-1,500 doses a week this fall.

Anderson says the recent increased spread of COVID seems to be contributing to a rise in people getting vaccines.

“We have seen a little bit of an uptick with some increased COVID activity this fall and in the winter, Thanksgiving,” Anderson said.

A native of Prairie du Chien, Brad graduated from UW - La Crosse and has worked in radio news for more than 30 years, mostly in the La Crosse area. He regularly covers local courts and city and county government. Brad produces the features "Yesterday in La Crosse" and "What's Buried on Brad's Desk." He also writes the website "Triviazoids," which finds odd connections between events that happen on a certain date, and he writes and performs with the local comedy group Heart of La Crosse. Brad been featured on several national TV programs because of his memory skills.

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