Governor Edwards announced on Thursday that on Monday, vaccinations will expand eligibility.
Starting Monday, March 22, 2021, all essential workers, including people working in food service and grocery stores, manufacturing, construction, clergy and other essential jobs will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccines in Louisiana, regardless of their underlying health conditions, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced Thursday.
Newly eligible populations also include postal, transportation, judiciary and media workers, faculty and staff of institutes of higher education and more frontline government workers. This group, called Priority Group 1-B, Tier Two, covers essential workers not previously eligible.
Starting Monday, all essential workers, including people working in food service and grocery stores, manufacturing, construction, clergy and other essential jobs will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccines in Louisiana, regardless of underlying health conditions. #lagov pic.twitter.com/syK5lDJ0Y5— John Bel Edwards (@LouisianaGov) March 18, 2021
This change applies to everyone 16 years and older. Currently in the United States, adults are eligible for three vaccines, Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson and Johnson. People who are 16 and 17 are only eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine and should work with their vaccine provider to ensure they are receiving that specific vaccine. All previously eligible people in Louisiana, including people 65 and older and those with certain health conditions, also remain eligible for the COVID vaccine.
“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,” Gov. Edwards said. “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.”
For information about how to get vaccinated in Louisiana and for the latest vaccine eligibility groups, visit covidvaccine.la.gov. [gov.louisiana.gov]
PRIORITY GROUPS IN LOUISIANA
Within priority groups and tiers there is no particular sequencing. Participating providers must make available vaccine available to anyone who is eligible. Failure to do so will inform future decisions about distribution.
Priority Group 1-A: Ongoing
- Health care 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)
- 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
- 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)
- Pulmonary fibrosis
- Sickle Cell Disease
- 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
- 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
Those people can schedule appointments on Monday and when they arrive, must show identification that they work in the fields identified. Those in these categories must be 16 and older.
Edwards says that vaccination priorities has been to vaccinate the highest priority groups first to reduce hospitalizations and deaths.
He says he believes this is the last expansion before opening to the general public. He is unsure when the announcement for the general public will be announced.
President Biden set a goal for May. Edwards says he believes Louisiana will get there sooner than that date.
A live stream is available below:
Last week, the state's eligibility for vaccines was expanded to include residents 16 and older with certain health or medical conditions. See the eligibility requirements here.
Three vaccines are being administered in Louisiana those include the two-dose Pfizer and Moderna Vaccines along with the single-dose Johnson&johnson vaccine.
Over 1 million vaccines have been administered in the state.
Stay in touch with us anytime, anywhere.
To reach the newsroom or report a typo/correction, click HERE.
Sign up for newsletters emailed to your inbox. Select from these options: Breaking News, Evening News Headlines, Latest COVID-19 Headlines, Morning News Headlines, Special Offers