Williamson County has crossed an important threshold in the quest to reach effective herd immunity, or the status at which a community will have collective protection against the coronavirus.

According to an analysis of data collected from the Texas Department of State Health Services and the U.S. Census Bureau, more than half of Williamson County’s total population is now fully vaccinated against COVID-19.

Community Impact Newspaper analyzed this data through collecting the cumulative number of fully vaccinated residents over the age of 12 and compared it to the population recorded by the U.S. Census Bureau's 2019 5-year American Community survey.

As of June 20, 50.39% of county residents are fully vaccinated.

The percentage of fully vaccinated Williamson County residents has been steadily rising over the past several months, according to DSHS figures. Since the beginning of May, the percentage of vaccinated residents has climbed by approximately 16 percentage points.

According to DSHS data from June 20, nearly 80% of Williamson County’s residents age 65 or older are fully vaccinated.

Currently, only children and adults 12 years of age or older may receive federally approved coronavirus vaccines. Local health care provider Austin Regional Clinic is participating in a Pfizer vaccine trial for children ages 6 months-11 years old. The trial is one of the last steps necessary before the vaccine gets federally approved for young children.

As previously reported by Community Impact Newspaper, officials at Austin Public Health have previously used 67% vaccination of the population as the minimum benchmark necessary to approach herd immunity.