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W.Va. governor expands vaccine eligibility to 16-years-old and above

Published: Mar. 22, 2021 at 11:39 AM EDT
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CHARLESTON, W.Va. (WSAZ) - As of 11:00 a.m. Monday, all West Virginians over the age of 16 are now eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine, Gov. Jim Justice announced during his coronavirus press briefing.

“As we continue to lead the nation with our vaccine distribution, we do not want to take our foot off the gas,” said Gov. Justice. “I encourage all West Virginians to take advantage of this opportunity and get vaccinated.”

441,903 first doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been administered in the state and 297,927 have been fully vaccinated.

To pre-register for the COVID-19 vaccine click here.

West Virginians who are age 65 and older will continue to be prioritized first until all state residents in that age range who desire to receive the vaccine have been vaccinated.

To date, 221,739 West Virginians age 65 and older have chosen to be vaccinated, including 150,487 who are now fully vaccinated. Including doses from the Veterans Administration and from the Federal Pharmacy Partnership with Walgreens, 70% of West Virginia’s 65 and older population has now been vaccinated.

WSAZ reached out to the Kanawha-Charleston Health Department who says they have pulled multiple lists from the state’s COVID-19 registration system and made every effort to get everyone age 65 and over a vaccine.

They ask anyone 65 and older, or with underlying health conditions, to call (304) 357-5171 from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. on Tuesday and Wednesday to schedule an appointment for Saturday’s clinic.

The State says anyone age 65 and over who are still waiting are urged to call the information line at 1(833)734-0965. The info line is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m., and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m.

According to Gov. Justice, all fairs and festivals will be able to resume beginning May 1.

“These events are part of the fabric of our state. We want them to go on,” Gov. Justice said. “I expect all these events to continue following all safety guidelines in order to keep West Virginians safe if they choose to attend these events.”

Gov. Justice added that updated safety guidelines will be issued later this week on the West Virginia Strong – The Comeback page of the Governor’s website. “Unless there’s a real backslide with our numbers, we plan to have all of our fairs and festivals as we try to get back to some level of normalcy,” Gov. Justice said.

Keep checking the WSAZ app for the latest information.

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