Hillsborough County is lagging behind neighboring counties in vaccination efforts.
According to the most recent Florida Department of Health data, Hillsborough vaccinated 684,860 residents as of July 1. While that’s more than any county in the Tampa Bay region, it’s a smaller portion of the overall population — just 53% of those eligible to receive a vaccine.
By comparison, Pinellas County vaccinated 57% of those age 12 and older, and Pasco County vaccinated 54%. A total of 23 counties statewide have a higher vaccination rate than Hillsborough County.
The Florida Department of Health now only reports COVID-19 data weekly. The next report, and to an even larger degree the report after that, will begin to show whether the Fourth of July holiday and associated gatherings and travel had any impact on rising incidences of COVID-19.
As of July 1, all three counties had low positive test rates for the virus and low weekly totals. Again though, Hillsborough led with 952 new cases during the reporting period at a 5.7% positivity rate.
Pinellas tallied just 393 new cases at a 3.7% positivity rate, while Pasco County reported 272 new cases at a 4.9% positivity rate.
Hillsborough also leads the region in cumulative cases, having so far tallied 146,166 cases at an overall positive test rate of 17.4%. Only Miami-Dade, Broward and Palm Beach counties in South Florida and Orange County in the Orlando area have confirmed more cases.
Pinellas County has confirmed 80,951 cases with an overall positive test rate of 15.2%, while Pasco County, a less populous area, has counted 43,428 cases throughout the pandemic at a 16.7% positivity rate.
But there is some good news for Hillsborough. During the most recent reporting period, 7,810 people received a shot, the fourth highest total in the state for the week behind the same four counties leading Hillsborough in overall caseload.
Pinellas County vaccinated an additional 4,285 people during the week and Pasco 2,364 people.