All Tennesseans 16 and older to be eligible for COVID-19 vaccine in April
KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) - All Tennesseans ages 16 and older will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine in April, according to the Tennessee Department of Health.
Governor Bill Lee announced individuals 16 and older will be eligible statewide no later than April 5.
On Monday, the state moved into phase 2 of the vaccination plan. During this phase people in critical infrastructure, including public transit employees, telecommunication staff and utility workers among others. Individuals 55 and older are also now eligible for the vaccine.
“As Tennessee continues working to protect those most at risk of serious illness and death from COVID-19 and provide vaccinations as quickly as possible, counties may progress through each of the phases as vaccine supply allows,” said Bill Christian, spokesperson for the Department of Health, in an email.
Phase 3 includes residents and staff members of congregate living facilities including college dormitories, group homes and shelters and those in the corrections system. Phase 3 also includes grocery store workers who were not eligible for vaccination based on previous age or risk-based categories. To help ensure vaccines are available to these populations, direct allocations of vaccines will be made to these facilities.
To date, 2.9 million COVID-19 vaccine doses have been delivered to Tennessee providers. Nearly 311,000 vaccine doses are expected to be delivered the week of March 22. The state is also expecting g new allocations of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine week of March 29, which will increase weekly supplies by 30 percent.
“As we’ve promised, we’re able to expand our COVID-19 vaccine eligibility as vaccine supplies have increased and we’ve made substantial progress in protecting those most at risk of serious illness and death from COVID-19,” said Tennessee Health Commissioner Lisa Piercey, MD, MBA, FAAP. “Tennessee will now open COVID-19 vaccination to all eligible adults well ahead of the federal goal of May 1.”
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