Iowans ages 65 and older will be able to get the COVID-19 vaccine a little earlier than expected.
The Iowa Department of Public Health has now added that age group to the Phase 1B priority population for the COVID-19 vaccine, following President Biden’s executive order on Thursday. Phase 1B previously was limited to ages 75 and older, with ages 65 to 74 included in Phase 1C.
Phase 1B will begin no sooner than February 1st. This phase also includes several tiers of priority groups:
Tier 1 includes:
- First responders (e.g. firefighters, police officers, and child welfare social workers)
- PK-12 school staff, early childhood education, and childcare workers
Tier 2 includes:
- Food, agriculture, distribution and manufacturing workers who work in or live in congregate settings that do not allow for social distancing
- Individuals with disabilities living in home settings and their direct care staff
Tier 3 includes:
- Staff of and individuals living in congregate settings (does not include college dormitories)
- Government officials, to ensure continuity of government including staff, engaged in state business at the Iowa Capitol during the legislative session
Tier 4 includes:
- Inspectors responsible for hospital, long-term care, and child safety
Tier 5 includes:
- Correctional facility staff and individuals incarcerated
Delaware County Public Health says while the expansion of this criteria is welcome news, it is important for everyone to be aware that the current SUPPLY of vaccine will NOT meet the demand. Delaware County Public Health anticipates the allotted vaccine in Delaware County to be small until vaccine supply is ramped up.
And Public Health says Delaware County’s plans for distribution of Phase 1B are not finalized. As vaccine clinics are finalized, information will be shared with the community.
Delaware County Public Health, Regional Family Health and Regional Medical Center do not have a waitlist for the vaccine.