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Ross: The Make-Me group is the only one still unvaccinated

A sign displays the types of COVID-19 vaccination doses available at a Walgreens mobile bus clinic on June 25, 2021 in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)

The big discussion is how to vaccinate the unvaccinated before they start filling the hospitals again.

And as social marketers know, there are essentially three levels of nudging that people respond to: Show Me, Help Me, and Make Me.

Some people were born with their sleeves already rolled up. All they ask is SHOW ME what to do.

Other people are willing, but maybe they need a ride. Or they need just one more good reason. Those are the people who say HELP ME – if you help me roll up my sleeve, I’m in.

Well, at this point, the Show Me’s and Help Me’s are all vaccinated.

And that leaves the Make-Me group, which is concentrated in the southern states. They have many excuses. But ultimately, their sleeve will stay put until the shot is required for school or for a job, or to travel.

The good news here in Washington is that our own Make-Me group is really small. Especially in King County, where vaccine hesitancy is just over 3%.

And here’s what that means for Washington, based on a few hours spent looking at the numbers:

The University of Washington projection is that we would need 1,300 COVID beds by December. Well, Washington state has 10,216 staffed hospital beds, but to be able to serve regular patients, you want to keep COVID patients to 10% of the total. Which would be about 1,000. So, it’s going to be tight.

That means, number one, we badger our holdout friends to get the shot. Number two, unvaccinated people need to follow the mask rule. And number three (and yes, this one is my own idea) the State Patrol should sit at the borders and the airports and turn away anyone trying to get in unless they have a vaccination card. Especially if they’ve been to a “Make Me” state.

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