Ricketts Says Next Phase of Vaccination Plan Could Start Soon
By Jack Williams , Managing Editor and Reporter Nebraska Public Media News
March 3, 2021, 4:23 p.m. ·
Governor Pete Ricketts is confident some health departments across the state could soon start on the next phase of the vaccination effort as shots for people 65 years and older wind down in some areas. Phase 2-A will include people 50-64 years old, but will also allow for a portion of the vaccine to be used on younger people with high-risk health conditions.
“We’re going to prioritize, again, people by age, 50-64, because those people are the next-highest category of being at risk,” Ricketts said. “But we are going to allow providers to be able to get folks who have underlying health conditions that may put them more at risk to work with the local health directors to be able to get them vaccinated as well, even if they are below the age of 50.”
The state won’t decide who those people that fall into the high-risk category are.
“The decision of who will be vaccinated with those doses will be made by the medical community. The state will not be determining what medical conditions are included,” said Angie Ling, who is coordinating Nebraska’s vaccination efforts. “The medical community will identify the appropriate patients and work with the health departments to get them scheduled.”
Ling said the state is set to receive around 42,000 doses of the Moderna and Pfizer vaccines this week and has already received 15,000 doses of the new Johnson & Johnson one-shot vaccines. Health officials say Phase 2-A of the state’s vaccination plan could begin with several weeks in some parts of Nebraska.