The Subsequent 5 Teams Who Will Get the COVID-19 Vaccine
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After nearly a year of coronavirus misery in the United States, hopes will dawn in 2021 that new vaccines will finally bring the pandemic to a standstill.
But many of us wonder when we will finally be eligible to receive our dose of the drug. The vaccine itself is currently only available in limited quantities and is being distributed to those who need it most.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have put forward a schedule broken into phases that will likely determine who will receive the next dose of the vaccine and the order in which they will be vaccinated.
The CDC schedule is a recommendation to federal, state, and local governments as to who should be vaccinated first.
It is important to note that individual states make their own decisions about who will receive the vaccine and when. However, many are expected to follow CDC guidelines.
Who will get the vaccine now?
As part of what the CDC calls Phase 1a, health workers and residents of long-term care facilities are already receiving the vaccine. They are at greatest risk of becoming infected with the coronavirus and / or having serious health problems if they contract COVID-19, the disease caused by the virus.
There are approximately 21 million healthcare workers in the US, from those who work in hospitals and emergency services to those who provide long-term care and home care. The CDC has suggested that health workers whose jobs require them to work within 6 feet of others be vaccinated in front of other health workers.
Another 3 million adults live in long-term care facilities, including nursing homes, assisted living facilities, and skilled care facilities. The CDC has suggested that residents of qualified care facilities receive the vaccine before residents of other types of long-term care facilities if doses are limited due to the COVID-19-associated death rate in the former group.
Qualified care facilities do not provide the same level of care or treatment as hospitals, but they do offer medical, nursing, and rehabilitative services such as intravenous injections and physical therapy.
Who will get the vaccine next?
Here are the five groups that are likely to be vaccinated next.
Basic workers and frontline people 75 and older (Phase 1b)
The key frontline workers include a wide range of people who have jobs that are at higher risk of infection or who simply have jobs that are particularly important to society and a functioning economy. According to the CDC, these include:
- police officers
- Food and farm workers
- U.S. postal workers
- Manufacturing workers
- Workers in grocery stores
- Employees in local public transport
- Those who work in education (teachers, support staff and day care workers)
People who are 75 years of age or older are particularly at risk of poor results when contracting COVID-19. About 80% of reported COVID-19 deaths in the United States occurred in people aged 65 or over, according to the CDC.
People 65-74, people 16-64 with underlying health conditions, other key workers (phase 1c)
As mentioned above, people who are 65 years or older are at particularly high risk of poor outcomes – including hospitalization, illness, and death – from COVID-19.
People with certain health conditions are at high risk of complications from COVID-19 regardless of their age. The CDC has a long list of such underlying terms on its website.
The main workers who should be vaccinated at this stage include those who work in the following areas:
- Transport and logistics
- Food service
- Housing and finance
- Information technology
- public safety
When is each phase introduced?
Are you wondering when each phase will take place? It’s hard to tell and will likely vary from state to state.
For example, Massachusetts officials posted an estimated time horizon for residents on a government website. The Bay State schedule is divided into three phases:
- Phase 1: December-February
- Phase 2: February-April
- Phase 3: April-June
The Massachusetts schedule roughly follows, if not exactly, CDC guidelines. Most of the groups named in the CDC guidelines will be vaccinated by April, with the remainder of the general population expected to receive the medicine by April.
It is important to note that these and other time frames are estimates. The US originally hoped to vaccinate 20 million people by the end of December, but news reports suggest the government has fallen well below that mark. Further delays are possible.
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