TACOMA, Wash. — The overwhelming majority of COVID-19 patients at Washington state's hospitals have something else in common: they are not vaccinated.
“It’s very frustrating for us as clinicians,” said Dr. Michael Anderson, Virginia Mason Franciscan Health’s chief medical officer.
Anderson said it is rare to find patients who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
“We know that they had the opportunity to be vaccinated and chose not to be vaccinated for one reason or another,” said Anderson. “It really does take a greater toll on our staff members as well.”
Anderson said not getting vaccinated is a “dangerous decision to make.”
”We try not to be judgmental. But I'll tell you, we know that there was a solution to this pandemic,” said Anderson.
Alisia Bohanna, a 13-year-old seventh-grader in Tacoma, got her vaccine earlier this spring. It ended up earning her a free year of college.
Bohanna was one of the first vaccinated teens selected to win GET college credits to cover a year of tuition.
A lottery spokesperson said the credits are worth $12,200 now but are expected to be worth more by the time the winners use them.
Bohanna said she either wants to be a lawyer or a surgeon. And while she’s happy about getting free tuition, it’s not why she got vaccinated.
“I didn’t know there was a lottery,” said Bohanna.
She was glad to get vaccinated when it was made available to younger teens.
”It puts you like at a state of peace,” said Bohanna. “It’s nice knowing you’re not at risk anymore.”