How close is the U.S. to herd immunity?

A few weeks ago, Dr. Anthony Fauci was confident the U.S. would reach herd immunity by the fall. But now, medical experts are concerned another surge of COVID-19 cases will happen.

Posted: Mar 19, 2021 8:18 AM

ROCHESTER, Minn. - While almost 40 million Americans have been fully vaccinated, we still have a lot more to go until we reach herd immunity.

Herd immunity is when enough of the population is vaccinated that it protects the unvaccinated people. Right now, the U.S. is at 10% of the population vaccinated and 70% is needed for herd immunity. Freeborn County's public health director, Sue Yost, has concerns as people seem to be sick of the restrictions. "They're not wanting to wear their masks as often," said Yost. "People are getting more lax on making sure that they're washing their hands and they're doing their social distancing. They're doing more family gatherings, more going to restaurants, more things are opening up. So more people are getting sick because things are opening up."

Yost explained not enough vaccines and people not masking up are what's standing in the way of us reaching herd immunity. While she believes we will one day get there, she's not sure what the future looks like. "I'm not sure that we'll ever totally go back to normal. We saw this year with very low cases of flu, so we know that masking does help," said Yost. "So it may be that we're strongly encouraged to during flu seasons continue to do masking and stuff. I don't know that we'll ever go back to normal again."

Yost said the next steps are learning how long people are immune for after they've received the vaccine. Getting an annual shot might be an option because of the new variants that keep coming out. While vaccines are rolling out every day, getting tested for COVID-19 remains the number one tool at slowing the spread of the virus.

Minnesota Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 770246

Reported Deaths: 8661
CountyCasesDeaths
Hennepin1537491923
Ramsey63444980
Dakota57071526
Anoka54052520
Washington33690331
Stearns28419253
St. Louis23735361
Scott21652160
Wright21388171
Olmsted18144120
Sherburne15515115
Carver1366556
Clay1025399
Rice9985131
Blue Earth966659
Crow Wing9518109
Chisago837263
Kandiyohi835197
Otter Tail8061105
Benton7477111
Beltrami658079
Mower645541
Douglas629190
Goodhue619985
Itasca618885
Winona611854
McLeod595770
Steele585825
Isanti573074
Morrison557767
Becker534862
Polk512879
Freeborn487642
Nobles481652
Lyon456356
Carlton446866
Nicollet434454
Pine428532
Cass425745
Mille Lacs416967
Brown411547
Todd400036
Le Sueur386332
Meeker356854
Waseca327331
Martin326336
Wabasha29538
Hubbard292744
Dodge273510
Roseau265227
Fillmore243812
Redwood240443
Wadena238429
Houston231117
Renville228549
Faribault220630
Pennington217227
Sibley211612
Cottonwood197128
Kanabec192230
Chippewa190340
Aitkin184043
Watonwan171112
Pope16148
Yellow Medicine157220
Rock155319
Jackson147315
Koochiching138619
Clearwater136618
Murray135011
Swift134619
Marshall134520
Pipestone133427
Stevens124911
Lake109521
Wilkin102814
Lac qui Parle98524
Mahnomen90312
Norman8789
Big Stone7974
Grant7869
Lincoln7845
Kittson61122
Red Lake5899
Unassigned538124
Traverse5165
Lake of the Woods4764
Cook2460

Iowa Coronavirus Cases

Data is updated nightly.

Cases: 474151

Reported Deaths: 6785
CountyCasesDeaths
Polk74657729
Linn29194394
Scott24733274
Black Hawk20335358
Woodbury19207244
Johnson17988100
Dubuque15834229
Pottawattamie14276200
Dallas14109108
Story1288551
Warren774296
Cerro Gordo6951110
Webster6950111
Clinton6929101
Des Moines667594
Marshall641885
Muscatine6352113
Wapello5936137
Jasper578279
Lee565689
Sioux565676
Marion508191
Buena Vista491746
Plymouth463487
Henry389847
Jones370861
Washington366856
Benton359257
Bremer357168
Boone350937
Carroll346353
Crawford339347
Mahaska322856
Dickinson301052
Clay279133
Buchanan279039
Jackson273546
Kossuth271873
Hardin270249
Tama264976
Fayette260649
Delaware258546
Cedar249526
Page249328
Wright243645
Hamilton233954
Winneshiek233338
Floyd221845
Harrison217777
Madison216925
Clayton214558
Poweshiek211741
Iowa208029
Butler206638
Cass201557
Jefferson201040
Mills199929
Allamakee194753
Cherokee193844
Lyon192941
Hancock187639
Winnebago186633
Calhoun186116
Appanoose180850
Shelby178439
Louisa171052
Grundy168537
Humboldt167727
Emmet167146
Franklin164628
Mitchell164043
Union162637
Chickasaw159318
Sac157924
Guthrie155434
Montgomery142342
Palo Alto142032
Clarke141328
Keokuk139635
Monroe134335
Howard128222
Ida118641
Greene116315
Davis115225
Lucas113724
Pocahontas111423
Monona108738
Worth10818
Adair105335
Osceola94017
Fremont86111
Van Buren84221
Decatur82612
Taylor79713
Wayne74824
Ringgold67727
Audubon66814
Adams5095
Unassigned380
Rochester
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Mason City
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Albert Lea
Clear
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Hi: 47° Lo: 29°
Feels Like: 33°
Austin
Clear
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Feels Like: 35°
Charles City
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41° wxIcon
Hi: 46° Lo: 31°
Feels Like: 34°
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