All essential workers in La. eligible for COVID-19 vaccine starting March 22

All essential workers in La. eligible for COVID-19 vaccine starting March 22
(Source: kauz)

SHREVEPORT, La. (KSLA) - Beginning Monday, March 22, all essential workers will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine in Louisiana, Governor John Bel Edwards announced during a news conference Thursday, March 18.

Essential workers included are those in food service and grocery stores, manufacturing, construction, clergy, etc. Those newly eligible also include postal, transportation, judiciary, and media workers, as well as faculty and staff of higher education institutions and front-line government workers. This group is called Priority Group 1-B, Tier 2 and covers essential workers not previously eligible.

“Our vaccine strategy in Louisiana has been to make sure that we were vaccinating the most high-risk individuals to protect them from getting COVID-19 and also preserve capacity in our hospitals. We’ve seen encouraging trends in our percent positivity of tests and also a drop in the number of Louisianans hospitalized with COVID. While many essential workers may already be eligible because of their underlying health conditions, beginning Monday, additional workers in key sectors will be able to get their vaccines, which is good news for tens of thousands of Louisianans who have helped keep our state running during these very trying times,” Gov. Edwards said. “This is likely the last expansion of vaccine eligibility in Louisiana before we make the shots available to everyone 16 and older, which we are targeting for some time in April. In some areas, it still may be challenging for workers to get an appointment, and I hope they will be patient with our vaccine providers who have worked tirelessly during this unprecedented vaccine effort. President Biden recently set a goal to open eligibility to all adults by the start of May, and I am confident, through continued commitments of doses from the federal government, that Louisiana will exceed this goal. I look forward to a day soon when all adult Louisianans are eligible for these safe and effective vaccines and we are no longer losing so many of our family members and neighbors to COVID-19.”

HAPPENING NOW

Gov. Edwards to discuss state’s response to COVID-19 in news conference

Posted by KSLA News 12 on Thursday, March 18, 2021

PRIORITY GROUPS IN LOUISIANA

Priority Group 1-A: Ongoing

  • Healthcare workers at Tier 1 and Tier 2 hospitals
  • Staff and residents of nursing homes and long-term care facilities
  • First responders to serve as vaccinators (Emergency Medical Services, fire personnel, law enforcement)

Priority Group 1-B, Tier One: Ongoing

  • Dialysis providers and patients
  • Ambulatory and outpatient providers and staff
  • Behavioral health providers and staff
  • Urgent care clinic providers and staff
  • Community care providers and staff
  • Dental providers and staff
  • Nonemergency Medical Transportation staff
  • Professional home care providers (including hospice workers and both paid and unpaid home care staff) and home care recipients (including older and younger people with disabilities over the age of 16 who receive community or home-based care, as well as clients of home health agencies)
  • American Sign Language (ASL) interpreters and Support Service Providers (SSPs) working in community and clinic-based settings, and clients who are both deaf and blind
  • Health-related support personnel (lab staff, mortuary staff who have contact with corpses, pharmacy staff)
  • Schools of allied health students, residents, and staff
  • Law enforcement and other first responders
  • Persons 65 years old and older
  • Louisiana Unified Command Group
  • State and local essential COVID emergency response personnel
  • Some elections staff ahead of March and April elections
  • Teachers and any other support staff working onsite in K-12 or daycare
  • Legislators and legislative staff
  • All pregnant persons, regardless of age
  • Staff of congregate living facilities

Individuals aged 16-64 with at least one of the conditions listed by the CDC as placing them at an increased or likely risk of severe illness from the virus that causes COVID-19. The CDC list of conditions can be found here. They are:

  • Asthma (moderate to severe)
  • Cancer
  • Cerebrovascular disease
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • Chronic liver disease
  • COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
  • Cystic fibrosis
  • Severe neurologic conditions such as dementia
  • Down Syndrome
  • Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies
  • Hypertension
  • Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant
  • Immunocompromised state from blood or bone marrow transplant, immune deficiencies, HIV, use of corticosteroids, or use of other immune weakening medicines
  • Obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30kg/m2 or higher but < 40kg/m2)
  • Severe obesity (BMIC >40kg/m2)
  • Overweight (BMI 25-30 kg/m2)
  • Pregnancy
  • Pulmonary fibrosis
  • Sickle Cell Disease
  • Smoking
  • Thalassemia (a type of blood disorder)
  • Type 1 diabetes
  • Type 2 diabetes mellitus

Priority Group 1-B, Tier Two: Starting Monday, March 22

  • Higher Education faculty/staff
  • Food and agricultural workers
  • Food service (restaurant/bar) workers, hotel workers, and other hospitality workers
  • Judiciary staff, including judges, court staff, clerks of court and staff, district attorneys, and public defenders
  • Postal workers
  • Manufacturing workers
  • Grocery store workers
  • Transportation workers, including river pilots
  • Water and wastewater workers
  • Energy workers
  • Bank tellers
  • Construction workers
  • Clergy
  • IT and communications workers
  • Media workers
  • Public safety engineers and other workers
  • Public health workers
  • Frontline government workers
  • Child, youth, and family service workers
  • Veterinarians and support staff
  • Waste management workers
  • Public and private security and emergency preparedness workers

Click here for more information from LDH.

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