Vaccine eligibility for next phase moved a week earlier

People age 16 and up with certain pre-existing conditions in Wisconsin will be eligible for the coronavirus vaccine starting March 22, a week earlier than previously announced, Gov. Tony Evers said Tuesday.

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — People age 16 and up with certain pre=existing conditions in Wisconsin will be eligible for the coronavirus vaccine starting March 22, a week earlier than previously announced, Gov. Tony Evers said Tuesday.

Last week, the state said that people in that eligibility group would be able to get vaccinated starting March 29.

"Our vaccinators across the state are doing great work to get folks vaccinated," Evers said in a statement. "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."

The qualifying conditions that allow someone to be eligible starting March 22 include moderate to severe asthma; cancer; diabetes; high blood pressure, Down syndrome; and having a body mass index of 25 or above. Women who are pregnant are also eligible.

The state health department on Tuesday also clarified that all clergy are eligible and said all judges, prosecutors, and other essential criminal court personnel, in addition to public defenders, are immediately eligible.

The general public will become eligible on May 1.

The news came just as the Legislature was set to pass a bill that would allow dentists to administer the COVID-19 vaccine.

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