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New individuals eligible for vaccine Monday, Baker-Polito issue holiday guidance

BOSTON – The Baker-Polito Administration announced Friday that residents 55+ and residents with one certain medical condition will be eligible for vaccine on Monday, April 5th.

In addition, the Administration announced that Massachusetts will adopt the CDC’s updated list of medical conditions. This week, the CDC added more medical conditions that are linked to an increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19. Massachusetts will adopt this guidance and make individuals eligible starting April 5th if they have one of these medical conditions. As a result of adopting the CDC’s list, more residents will be eligible starting April 5th.

On Monday, April 5th, residents 55+ and residents with one certain medical condition will be eligible to receive vaccine at any of the Commonwealth’s over 300 vaccination locations, including 269 pharmacy locations. With this group, more than 1 million additional residents will be eligible for vaccine in the Commonwealth.

The Administration was informed early this week of a one-time increased shipment of 100,000 J&J vaccines that will arrive in the state early next week. Depending on supply from the federal government, it could take weeks for people to be notified that an appointment is available at a mass vaccination site.

In accordance with CDC guidelines, the Commonwealth has adopted recent additions to the list of conditions that cause individuals to be at an increased risk of severe illness from COVID-19.

Individuals with one of the following conditions are eligible on Monday, April 5th:

Chronic kidney disease
Chronic lung diseases, including COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease), asthma (moderate-to-severe), interstitial lung disease, cystic fibrosis, and pulmonary hypertension
Dementia or other neurological conditions
Diabetes (type 1 or type 2)
Down syndrome
Heart conditions (such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, cardiomyopathies or hypertension)
HIV infection
Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system)
Liver disease
Overweight and obesity
Sickle cell disease or thalassemia
Smoking, current or former
Solid organ or blood stem cell transplant
Stroke or cerebrovascular disease, which affects blood flow to the brain
Substance use disorders

For individuals that have already pre-registered but would like to update their information to reflect the new medical conditions recognized by the CDC and Massachusetts as of April 5th: The administration is building a feature for individuals to edit their submission that will be made available soon.

The Administration also issued a holiday guidance.

“While vaccine efforts continue across the Commonwealth, it is important that residents celebrate Passover and Easter weekend responsibly. Residents are encouraged to celebrate with your immediate household, wear masks, and, if you do have a small celebration, consider holding it outside if the weather cooperates. If you cannot celebrate outside, be sure to open windows to allow for fresh air.”

“Residents should continue to practice social distancing, limit your interactions with your closest and engage in physical distancing.”

“Individuals are encouraged to get tested if feeling sick or think you’ve been exposed to COVID-19. Testing is free, and widely available, with over 400 testing sites in the Commonwealth.”

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