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OSDH Weekly Briefing Recap

Thursday, September 16, 2021

OKLAHOMA CITY — The Oklahoma State Department of Health held a media briefing today, September 16, to provide updates on the state’s response to COVID-19.

Below, please see highlights from the discussion. A recording of the briefing can be found here.


  • The supply of COVID-19 rapid tests continues to be strained nationwide. OSDH is seeking supplies from additional providers to keep up with the increase in demand.
    • An additional 100,000 rapid tests were added to the state’s warehouse this week.
    • We have reengaged our partnership with IMMY to increase our access points to testing.
    • OSDH is also working with the State Department of Education to make access to testing easier for many Oklahomans with a voluntary testing program in schools.
      • In collaboration with OSDE, we are implementing free, optional, in-school COVID-19 screening testing through a CDC grant to keep kids and school staff safe in the classroom.
    • We appreciate Oklahomans proactively seeking testing if they experience common COVID-19 symptoms and encourage everyone to continue doing so.
  • OSDH anticipates that we will soon receive guidance from the FDA and CDC on the possibility of providing booster doses of COVID-19 vaccine to Oklahomans.
    • The FDA’s advisory committee will meet tomorrow, September 17, to discuss its recommendations on making booster doses available to fully vaccinated Americans.
    • Once their approval and clinical guidance is given, we will be able to begin administration of booster doses in the state.
    • We don’t have many additional details to provide at this time, but expect to know more in the coming days and have plenty of vaccine supply and plans in place to adapt to the guidance we receive from the FDA and CDC.
  • Oklahoma has officially surpassed 4M vaccine doses administered. Thank you to everyone who has stepped up to get their COVID-19 vaccine.
    • As of today:
      • 4,001,703 total doses have been administered
      • 1,814,425 Oklahomans have completed the full series; this includes:
        • 45.9% of the total population
        • 57.0% of the adult population
        • 79.1% of the 65+ population
      • 2,184,635 Oklahomans have received at least 1 dose; this includes:
        • 55.2% of the total population
        • 68.2% of the adult population
        • 90.1% of the 65+ population
    • The majority of new COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths continue to occur among unvaccinated people.
      • 87% of all reported deaths in the state from COVID-19 occurred before vaccination was open to all individuals 18+.
      • Vaccine uptake has been much greater in the 65+ population, protecting that group proportionally more than others.
        • For 15-24-year-olds, 42% of deaths in that age range have occurred after vaccination became available.
        • For 75-84-year-olds, just 10% of deaths in that age range have occurred after vaccination became available.


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