- By Jason Howland
Mayo Clinic responds to next phase of COVID-19 vaccinations in Minnesota
Minnesota Gov. Tim Walz announced on Friday, March 26, that COVID-19 vaccination eligibility is expanding to all state residents 16 and older, regardless of health condition on Tuesday, March 30. As a result, Mayo Clinic is moving to the next phase of COVID-19 vaccinations in Minnesota.
This announcement comes as Minnesota anticipates a significant increase in weekly doses to 145,000 and likely dramatically more by the end of April. The state will continue to allocate doses among its own sites, as well as providers and other vaccine distributors.
"It's promising to hear that the State of Minnesota is expanding COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to all Minnesota residents who are 16 and older regardless of health condition," says Dr. Abinash Virk, co-chair of Mayo Clinic's COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation and Distribution Work Group. "However, with the limited vaccine supply, we will continue to use our judgement to offer the vaccine as best as we can to the community based on availability of the vaccine.”
We are not done with [current eligible patients} yet, we have quite a large number of patients in that group, and it would be best if we could actually get a little bit further along in that group, she adds.
The expansion is quicker than the state originally anticipated, in that several groups that had previously been staggered for eligibility over late spring and early summer have become eligible in March simultaneously.
Details on who is eligible to be vaccinated for COVID-19 are on the Minnesota COVID-19 Response website.
As demand for COVID-19 vaccines will likely continue to exceed COVID-19 vaccine allocations for the next weeks, Mayo Clinic is mindful that staff who have not yet been vaccinated for COVID-19 will be eager to be vaccinated along with their families.
Mayo will follow a balanced approach, in concordance with state directives, as it continues to prioritize vaccinations for patients by proactively sending vaccine appointment invitations to patients with underlying conditions, increasing vaccination opportunities for staff and all Minnesota residents who are 16 and older, as vaccine supply allows.
On Tuesday, March 30, Mayo Clinic patients 16 and older who have not yet been invited to be vaccinated for COVID-19 and are awaiting vaccination will be eligible to be vaccinated for COVID-19.
Mayo Clinic patients may log on to their Patient Online Services account to see if appointments are available. Call to see if an appointment can be scheduled on the Rochester campus: 507-538-4040. Patients also may want to check the Minnesota Department of Health’s website for other locations offering the vaccine.
Get answers to your questions
Visit the COVID-19 Information Center for more resources, including answers to FAQs regarding the safety, eligibility, availability and timing of COVID-19 vaccines. To learn about Mayo's recommendations for the public, check the COVID-19 information on mayoclinic.org.
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