Governor Walz announced a plan this week to ensure vaccine administration is moving as fast as possible. The state is implementing new goals and tracking systems to encourage all providers to administer 90% of the vaccines they receive within 72 hours and the rest within one week. If a provider does not meet the goals, they should anticipate potential changes to their vaccine allocations. This progress can be tracked at the state’s updated vaccine data dashboard.
Some older adults have also started receiving vaccines through their local health care provider. To give more flexibility towards clinics and hospitals, health providers can begin to vaccinate patients using leftover doses from their allocation that aren’t needed for their critical health care workers. Some clinics who are further along in vaccinating their employees have started scheduling appointments for patients who are 65 and older. Smaller or independent clinics may not yet be at this stage.
The priority remains vaccinating older adults, teachers, child care workers, and other essential workers as quickly as possible. Older adults are at a much higher risk of developing severe illness due to COVID-19, especially those living in congregate settings, which is why they continue to be a priority during these early vaccination stages. At the same time, teachers and other school employees must also be prioritized to make sure our schools open safely. As states across the country grapple with limited supplies, the federal government must step up and deliver more vaccines. The Biden administration has announced good news that Minnesota’s allocation will be slightly larger in the coming weeks, and DFLers are hopeful this supply will continue to increase so that everyone who wants a vaccine has easy access to one.