By Claudia Chiappa
Boston University News Service
Gov. Charlie Baker unveiled an updated vaccination timeline Wednesday, detailing when all remaining residents will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
According to the new schedule, individuals over 60-years-old and workers in certain categories will become eligible starting Monday, March 22. Specific job sectors have also been added to the list of categories on the state website including grocery store workers, restaurant staff and more.
The last step in “Phase 2” of the vaccine rollout will start April 5, when people over the age of 55 and residents with one qualified medical condition become eligible. Finally, starting April 19, all residents over 16 will be eligible to receive the vaccination, as Phase 3 begins.
“I know everybody’s anxious about all this, but it’s important to remember that everyone who wants a vaccine will get one and that practically no other state in America is moving as quickly as we are and as equitably as we are here in Massachusetts,” Baker said in an update Wednesday morning.
The state’s vaccine rollout first started in December, and since then, over 900,000 people have been fully-vaccinated, according to a daily report released by the state Department of Public Health on Tuesday. 1.6 million people have received the first dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, while 63,000 people have received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccination.
The new timeline comes a week after the Baker administration announced all residents could preregister for the vaccine through the state’s new preregistration website, which went online on Friday, March 12. People who preregister will be notified when their group becomes eligible and will then be able to schedule an appointment at one of the state’s mass vaccination locations. According to the state website, additional locations will be added later in April.
During Wednesday’s press conference, Baker said the state would continue to open up as planned and that projections for the next months look encouraging.