Anyone 16+ eligible for vaccine if providers can’t fill appointments, DeWine says

Gov. DeWine updates ongoing vaccine efforts

CINCINNATI (FOX19) - Gov. Mike DeWine announced more people are now able to get the COVID-19 vaccine.

Ohio residents ages 16 and older can now get the COVID-19 vaccine as long as a provider is unable to fill appointment slots, Gov. DeWine announced.

The governor said last week that all people ages 16 and up will become fully eligible for the vaccine on March 29.

So, allowing that age group to fill unused appointment slots does speed up vaccine eligibility for those 16 and older.

“I authorized all of the health departments in the state or any other locations, we have about 1,300 locations around the state of Ohio, so we have now authorized them that if they cannot fill slots this week or next week, we’ve authorized them this morning to go-ahead and anybody 16 years of age and older,” Gov. DeWine said Monday. “So, anybody 16 years of age and older, if that department has not been able to fill the slots this week they can go ahead and take anybody 16 years of age and older.”

The state is currently allowing anyone 40 and older, and those who are diagnosed with certain conditions or diseases (cancer, kidney disease, heart disease) to receive the vaccine.

Anyone who is eligible for the vaccine, but does not have computer access, can call 1-833-427-5634.

Gov. DeWine announced a number of changes regarding visitations at nursing homes and assisted living facilities on Monday.

Perhaps the biggest change is that visitations at those facilities are now required as long as safety protocols are met, the governor announced. Visitation was previously allowed, but not required.

Vaccinated residents can now physically touch their visitors as long the person is wearing a mask. Also, private room visitations can resume.

The minimum time allowed for visitations is 30 minutes, Gov. DeWine said. The max time previously allowed for visits was 30 minutes.

Ohio’s COVID-19 cases surpassed a milestone as more than 1 million cases have been reported.

The governor said with 1,444 new COVID-19 cases reported Monday, Ohio’s cases are starting to plateau.

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