Indiana Expands Vaccination Eligibility for Academics
Here are some of the key takeaways from this update, which have some great news for those of you who work in education:
Starting Monday, teachers and staff from Pre-K to 12 can receive the COVID-19 vaccine. This includes school staff such as helpers, caretakers, auxiliary staff, cafeteria employees and caretakers. Indiana initially said no to offering the vaccine to school staff and decided to focus more on older, high-risk populations.
Indiana also includes new comorbidities for the funding list. You can see these terms here:
Governor Eric Holcomb says expanding vaccines to include teachers and school staff could limit access to those with comorbid diagnoses that increase their risk for COVID-19. The direction to extend the authorization for teachers from the Biden administration.
“Since then, they have also directed states to prioritize teachers so that it affects the list of people with comorbidities,” said Governor Holcomb.
The Department of Health is also discussing vaccine supply and COVID case trends in Hoosier state. Indiana just received its 2 millionth dose of coronavirus vaccine this week. COVID deaths, hospital stays and daily case rates continue to decline, but officials stress that residents must still wear a mask and social distance even if residents are vaccinated. Dr. Kristina Box says these mitigation strategies will persist until a large majority of Hoosiers are vaccinated, adding that vaccination is not a green light to attend large gatherings and protect yourself.
Health officials also talk about how 11% of the state is now fully vaccinated, for a total of 744,712. For the first doses administered in Indiana, that number is 1,178,265. More mass vaccination sites are planned for Indiana, one for Notre Dame on March 26th and 27th. The state sent 13,000 cans to the university.
According to the Department of Health, over 16,000 people were vaccinated at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway’s mass vaccination site last Friday through Monday.
There are plans to extend eligibility to those ages 40 to 49, but this depends on more doses making its way into the state.
“We have been notified that we will receive an additional 16,000 doses of Pfizer vaccine and we are still not sure when we will receive an additional Johnson and Johnson vaccine. So we are careful with the 54,000 doses that we originally received, ”says Dr. Lindsay Weaver, Indiana chief medical officer.
We will keep an eye on progress with this single dose from Johnson and Johnson.
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