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Delta motivating some holdouts to get vaccinated

Half of the eligible population in North Carolina still has not gotten one shot.

CHARLOTTE, N.C. — Since December, 9.8 million doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been given in North Carolina. Each week those numbers inch up a bit, but health officials are stressing the vaccine is the way out of the pandemic, as everyone is strongly encouraged to put back on the masks in the meantime.

The more contagious delta variant has pushed some who have been holding off to get vaccinated.

“With delta and I was like, I just want to be on the safe side, I don’t want to be sick or nothing,” Tina Alexander said after she got vaccinated at StarMed Healthcare on Monday.

And it’s better late than never.

“I don’t want to. There's not enough research for it,” Daniel Mosley said as he was waiting in line to get tested after being exposed to COVID-19 at a wedding.

RELATED: 'I can't go through this again' | COVID-19 survivor urges people to get their vaccine

Health experts are still up against a lot of vaccine hesitancy, as 50% of North Carolinians eligible to get the COVID-19 shots still haven't.

But there has been some renewed urgency as the delta variant gets more people sick.

“It concerned me, made me want to wear my mask again, be more careful,” Gunior Fowler said after getting vaccinated.

State data shows there was a spike in vaccines given the week of July 19. More than 61,000 first doses were given, the largest amount in one week since mid-May.

RELATED: 70% of American adults have at least started COVID vaccination process

“By getting it done, I feel a little at ease,” Alexander said.

While delta threatens to undo some of the progress made, some business owners are cracking down and falling in line with what Gov. Roy Cooper asked, pushing to get more of their workforce protected.

“I don’t really want to but I’ve got to keep my job,” Shane Price said. "I've got to eat."

This is the last chance to get vaccinated and have a chance at a million dollars. The final drawing is this Wednesday.

Contact Chloe Leshner at cleshner@wcnc.com and follow her on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.