People aged 65+ to be eligible for COVID-19 vaccine starting next week

MADISON, Wis. — The Wisconsin Department of Health Services says people in the state aged 65 and older will be eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine starting next week.

There are approximately 700,000 people in the state who are 65 or older that will be eligible starting Monday, January 25th, according to the DHS.

The state says it currently receives about 70,000 first doses of the vaccine from the federal government every week, meaning it will take some time for the vaccine to be distributed to the state’s entire senior population.

“Older adults have been hardest hit by the COVID-19 pandemic, and prioritizing this population will help save lives,” DHS Secretary-designee Andrea Palm said in a release. “Wisconsin systems and operations are ready to vaccinate more people. The amount of vaccine we get from the federal government will determine how quickly we can get these groups vaccinated. Our partners in health care, pharmacies and local public health are ready and up to the task.”

People 65 and older are especially vulnerable to the effects of COVID-19 and were recommended to be part of Phase 1b in the state’s vaccine rollout. The state has not officially announced everyone who is a part of Phase 1b yet.