Governor Announces New Priorities to Receive COVID-19 Vaccinations to Save Lives

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Governor Janet Mills at 1/13/21 COVID-19 Briefing.

Maine residents who are 70 years or older and adults of all ages with underlying high-risk medical conditions will now be priorities in the immunization program for the State of Maine.  This new strategy will also include additional emergency service personnel such as police and firefighters and people who support infrastructure critical to Maine’s COVID-19 response.

The reason that Maine residents under age 70 are not included in this immunization change is that there is simply not enough vaccine arriving in Maine weekly in the Operation Warp Speed program to include them in the program.  Should the supply increase, this policy would be revisited.  There are currently 193,000 residents who are older than 70. Older Mainers compromise a large number of those who get sick with the COVID-19 and die from it.  Governor Mills said that her goal is to save Maine lives. There is no official count for the number who qualify under the hi-risk medical group; diabetics, high blood pressure, heart conditions for example.

As of next week, January 18, 2021, information will be available on the state’s website helpful to those looking for vaccinations. Contact information will be available specifying health providers who can provide vaccinations to seniors.  There will be other information available as well at that site.

“New recommendations announced yesterday by the US Department of Health and Human Services appear to align with Maine’s goal to vaccinate people most vulnerable to COVID-19 as quickly as possible.  Maine is acting to implement its strategy, which is tailored to meet the unique needs of the state’s population, as it awaits further details on the federal government’s recommendations,” according to a press release issued by Governor Mills’ office today.

“If you send it, we will use it and save the lives of Mainers,” Governor Mills told the vice president of the US yesterday in a telephonic meeting.

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