Half of all Georgia residents are now fully vaccinated against COVID-19 — a figure that still trails the national average.
The state Department of Public Health announced the 50% milestone on Monday.
Nationally, a little more than 57% of the population is fully vaccinated, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
The best-performing states have vaccination rates above 70%.
Georgia continues to experience a decline in the number of new COVID cases following a surge fueled by the delta variant of the virus. But public health Commissioner Kathleen Toomey said COVID is still spreading in the state, particularly in areas of low vaccination.
Southeast Georgia’s vaccination rates are lower than the state average, ranging from a low of 22% fully vaccinated in Chalton County to a high of 49% in Glynn County. In fact, Glynn is the only county in the area with a rate above 38%, as of GDPH data from Monday.
State health officials urged the unvaccinated to get jabbed, warning that they create a risk of infection for their families and communities in addition to themselves.