ANALYSIS: Eastern Washington vaccine numbers probably under reported.


The Inlander is just out with a fascinating original analysis about Spokane County residents who got their vaccines across the border in Idaho, and therefore don't show up on Washington State's official rolls.

Early in the vaccine roll out, we saw lots of anecdotal evidence that people in the border region who wanted to get vaccinated, but didn't qualify for Washington State's tightly controlled age and risk cohorts, just hopped over to Post Falls or Coeur d'Alene, where the state's rollout was more lax and where, by March, clinics were reporting more supply than demand.

This included many younger frontline service workers and, aparently, much of the staff of the Inlander itself. In some Washington zip codes, such as suburban Liberty Lake and even more rural spots like Newman Lake and Rockford, people vaccinated in Idaho makeup around 5% of the population.

Not the vaccinated population of those places. The total population.

That's wild.

In all, the Inlander estimates that at least 5,600 people in Spokane County -- about one percent of the total county population -- got their vaccines in Idaho.

Another additional wrinkle: military installations like Spokane's Fairchild Airforce Base do not contribute to the state-wide database either, so anyone who got jabs at one of those is probably also missing from the data.

This report comes a day after Seattle announced it was the first large city to reach 70% vaccination rates. Eastern Washington lags below that number, but this report demonstrates that the true picture is a little rosier than the official statistics suggest.

It's a really good analysis. Go give the Inlander a click, they deserve it.

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