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California Announces it Will Next Vaccinate People with Additional Health Risks Regarding Covid-19

People with cancer, diabetes, severe obesity, or who are pregnant will be next in line starting March 15

Quickly following the announcement of three new groups of workers who will be eligible to receive the vaccine against Covid-19, the State of California's Department of Public Health announced it will permit vaccinations on March 15 of persons with serious health conditions making them more at risk to die from Covid-19.

The three groups of workers who will soon be eligible to receive vaccinations are education workers, food and agriculture workers, and emergency services workers. Groups already being vaccinated are frontline health care, law enforcement, and public safety workers and people over the age of 65.

But beginning March 15, added to these groups will be people whose serious health conditions make them subject to greater risk should they contract Covid-19. The conditions included are:

Cancer, current with debilitated or immunocompromised state

Chronic kidney disease, stage 4 or above

Chronic pulmonary disease, oxygen dependent

Down syndrome

Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) from solid organ transplant


Sickle cell disease

Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies (excludes hypertension)

Severe obesity (Body Mass Index ≥ 40 kg/m2)

Type 2 diabetes mellitus with hemoglobin A1c level greater than 7.5%

Yes, if you are severely overweight you may get ahead in line for the vaccine.

In addition, the state will allow people with developmental problems or severe high-risk disabilities to get the Covid-19 vaccine under certain conditions. If acquiring Covid-19 would prevent them from obtaining necessary services, they may be vaccinated to prevent a disruption in these services. The other condition is if caring for these individuals should they contract Covid-19 would be particularly challenging because of their disability.

The list of health conditions that make one eligible to receive the vaccine are subject to change and none of it guarantees a vaccination as the vaccine is still very scarce. Health and Human Services Secretary Dr. Mark Ghaly said in a telephone call with reporters that the new category comprises from 4 to 6 million people.


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