Who is next in line for the COVID-19 vaccine in Washington and Idaho and when will these phases begin? Here is what we know about the states’ distribution plans.
SPOKANE, Wash. – New information from the Washington State Department of Health (DOH) has pushed back the timeline for the public to receive Covid-19 vaccine, which means that life will not return to normal at any time.
Phases 2, 3 and 4 of Washington’s COVID-19 vaccination distribution plan were initially expected to begin in May 2021 and last until December, but the DOH state now predicts a start date for the summer or fall of 2021. Health officials have not yet announced who will be included these phases.
Difficulties in getting vaccine supplies could also delay the next group in Idaho’s distribution plan, a top health service said on Tuesday.
Both Washington and Idaho now vaccinate people aged 65 and older. But people in other groups, including some important workers, are still questioning when they can get the vaccine.
We are breaking down the current vaccination distribution plans in both Washington and Idaho, including what phase both states are in right now and when other groups can expect to get the shot.
The Washington State Department of Health (DOH) said that vaccinations for people 2-4 in Phase 1B are expected in the spring or summer of 2021, but officials have not provided a more specific timeline. However, they have describes who will receive the vaccine next:
- Phase 1B level 2: High-risk workers who are 50 years or older in parish settings, including grocery stores, prison facilities, public transport, schools, agriculture, etc.
- Phase 1B level 3: People aged 16-70 years with two or more underlying health conditions.
- Phase 1B level 4: High-risk workers in parish environments – such as level 2 – under the age of 50 and staff and volunteers of all ages in group housing.
Phases 2, 3 and 4 of Washington State are expected to begin in the summer or fall of 2021, but a DOH spokesman could not provide more information on Tuesday, February 2nd.
Vaccinations for Group 1 in Idaho’s distribution plan started in December 2020 and included health care staff, home care for elderly adults and people with high-risk medicines, emergency care, long-term care accommodation and staff, dentists and staff, pharmacists and staff, and public health and emergency staff.
Idaho is currently vaccinating people in Group 2 distribution plan. The extension was extended to people over the age of 65 and older in February after it was first made available to teachers, medical staff, rescue workers, correctional staff and assistant residents and workers, including from 12 January 2021.
Some people in northern Idaho who are 65 years and older began receiving the vaccine on Monday, February 1st.
Idaho’s director of health, Dave Jeppesen, noted on Tuesday that since the state currently receives only about 25,000 doses of the vaccine per week, it will take “several months” to get those over 65 vaccinated.
Next category in group 2, which can start again end of February or beginning of March, is expected to include food and agricultural workers, Idaho National Guard members and manufacturers, public transportation and U.S. postal workers under the Idaho Vaccine Plan.
Here are the next groups eligible for the Idaho vaccine and a potential distribution timeline, which may change:
Group 3: end of March to beginning of April: This group is expected to include individuals aged 16-64 years with medical conditions that increase the risk of severe COVID-19 symptoms and other important workers, although this category has not been fully evaluated by the State COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Committee and approved by Governor Brad Little.
Government officials expected to move into Group 3 in late March or early April, but the planning depends largely on the ability to vaccinate Idaho residents in Group 2. Approximately 470,000 Idaho residents are eligible to receive the vaccine in Group 3, said government officials.
Group four: May 2021: This group consists of the general public and vaccines are expected to begin in May 2021. This category has also not been fully evaluated by the State COVID-19 Vaccine Advisory Committee and approved by Governor Brad Little.
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