MADISON, Wis. –The Wisconsin Department of Health Services is moving up its timeline for allowing people with certain medical conditions to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
Starting on March 22, individuals age 16 or older who have one of the listed medical conditions will qualify for a vaccine.
The list includes 20 conditions, such as asthma, cancer, heart conditions, obesity, liver disease, Type 1 and 2 diabetes and pregnancy. The full list of conditions can be found at the bottom of this article.
The conditions are associated with an increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19. The group includes an estimated 2 million individuals or more, and officials warn there may need to be prioritization within each group based on severity, age, the number of conditions an individual has, and whether they live in a community that’s been disproportionately impacted by the virus.
Previously, the state announced it would begin vaccinating this group on March 29.
“Our vaccinators across the state are doing great work to get folks vaccinated and get this done, and because of their good work, Wisconsin continues to be a national leader in getting shots in arms,” said Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers.
“Moving up eligibility for this critical group will help us get over the finish line and sooner, and get us back to our Wisconsin way of life.”
Complete list of conditions:
- Asthma (moderate-to-severe)
- Cerebrovascular disease (affects blood vessels and blood supply to the brain)
- Chronic kidney disease
- COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
- Cystic fibrosis
- Down syndrome
- Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies
- Hypertension or high blood pressure
- Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant, blood or bone marrow transplant, immune deficiencies, HIV, use of corticosteroids, or use of other immune weakening medicines
- Liver disease
- Neurologic conditions, such as dementia
- Obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 30-39 kg/m2)
- Overweight (BMI of 25-29 kg/m2)
- Pulmonary fibrosis (having damaged or scarred lung tissues)
- Severe Obesity (BMI 40 kg/m2 or more)
- Sickle cell disease
- Type 1 or 2 diabetes mellitus
- Thalassemia (a type of blood disorder)
Individuals with the outlined medical conditions can access vaccine through a variety of options, including community-based clinics, health care providers, Local and Tribal Health Departments, and pharmacies.
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