Illinois expanding those eligible for COVID-19 vaccine

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Starting February 25, Illinois is expanding Phase 1B eligibility to those who have comorbidities and underlying conditions as defined by the CDC and also prioritize individuals with disabilities.

The decision to expand eligibility was made because of the steadily increasing federal vaccine supply.

“As quickly as we receive enough vaccine supply, we need to waste no time in protecting a broader section of our most vulnerable population,” said Governor JB Pritzker. “Those who are under 65 and live with comorbidities, such as cancer survivors or those living with heart disease, have an elevated risk of serious complications or death if they contract COVID-19. Illinois is moving forward in accordance with guidance from the CDC to expand our eligible population as supply allows, getting us closer to the point when the vaccine is widely available to all who want it. In the meantime, I encourage all Illinoisans to wear our masks and follow the mitigations so that more of our neighbors are healthy and alive when it’s their turn in the vaccination line.”

The expansion is for individuals 16 and older who weren’t otherwise covered in previous eligibility categories.

Illinois is using the below guiding framework, based on CDC guidelines, for what qualifies as a high-risk medical condition:

  • Cancer
  • Chronic kidney disease
  • COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease)
  • Diabetes
  • Heart condition
  • Immunocompromised state from a solid organ transplant
  • Obesity
  • Pregnancy
  • Pulmonary disease
  • Sickle cell disease

This list is subject to change as guidance evolves and does not reflect an order of priority.

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