BATH, N.Y. (WETM) – The Steuben County Legislature has accepted a COVID-19 vaccine response grant from the New York State Department of Health.

The $169,415 grant will be used to “increase the vaccination rates along with community outreach and communication.” The money can also be used to “comply with existing and future guidance from the U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services regarding increased COVID-19 vaccination and other vaccine uptake.”

According to the CDC, more than 53,000 Steuben County residents have received both doses of the COVID-19 vaccine, which is about 56.4 percent of the county population. About 7,000 more residents have received at least one shot and nearly 94 percent of residents 65 and older have received at least one dose.

The CDC reports that 72.9 percent of the total US population has received a COVID-19 vaccine as the omicron variant surges across the country.