Vaccine Eligibility soon to be available to Tennesseans 16 and up

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CHATTANOOGA, Tenn (WDEF) – Tennessee has vaccinated over 2 million people and Starting April 5th anyone who is over the age of 16 will be eligible to receive the coronavirus vaccination. 

So far Tennessee has been distributing the vaccine to health care workers, first responders, senior citizens and persons 16 and older who have high-risk health conditions – as well as caregivers and household residents of medically fragile children. 

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On Monday, however, Governor Lee made an announcement offering more people access to the vaccine. 

“No later than April 5th every Tennessean 16 and up will be eligible to receive the vaccine.a few Tennessee counties will start that process within the upcoming days. The federal government has asked us to make sure every adult can receive access by may 1st and Tennessee will beat that deadline,” says Gov. Bill Lee, Tennessee. 

With hospitals seeing a slight rise in hospitalizations due to Covid-19, Rae Bond with the Covid-19 task force says as more vaccines become available the new eligibility expansion is a big deal.

“It’s really great news that the supply line for vaccines has been significantly. That’s a really big deal for our community. The county health department is being very responsive as far as supplies become more available. They want to get more shots in arms,” says Rae Bond, Covid-19 Task Force.

Local physicians do want to remind residents that everyone should get the vaccination because the benefits do outweigh any risks. 

“People are worried but their risk is less than one million of having any sort of significant reaction. I can tell everybody with great certainty that their risk of having something bad happen to them if they get infected with Covid -19 is not low, it’s in fact significantly high,” says Dr. Mark Anderson, Infectious Disease at CHI Memorial. 

Dr. Mark Anderson with CHI Memorial advises residents to get whatever vaccine is available to them no matter the company and that any vaccine will lessen your symptoms of the virus. 

For a link to the health departments vaccine appointment page click here