MA Expanding COVID Vaccine Eligibility | WAMC

MA Expanding COVID Vaccine Eligibility

Feb 17, 2021

Massachusetts residents aged 65 and older, and those 16 and older with two approved comorbidities, can book COVID-19 vaccine appointments starting Thursday.

Governor Charlie Baker said Wednesday the expansion includes about 1 million people, but Massachusetts has only been receiving about 110,000 first doses per week from the federal government.

"Unless we see a massive increase in shipments from the feds, it will take us at least a month for people in these new groups to be able to book their first vaccine appointment," said Baker.  

Baker says more than 70,000 appointments are scheduled to be posted at mass vaccination sites tomorrow. The only such site in Western Massachusetts is at the Eastfield Mall in Springfield.

Eligible conditions include asthma, cancer, and kidney disease, among others. Residents can click here to book an appointment.  

Meanwhile, the Democratic-led state legislature plans to call members of Governor Baker’s administration in for hearings on the state’s COVID-19 vaccination efforts. The move follows criticism that the rollout has been sluggish and marked by inequity. Baker, a Republican, says his administration speaks regularly with top lawmakers about pandemic response.

"We provide them with a lot of material and information and obviously we'll look forward to talking to them about this," said Baker. 

The state has administered more than 1 million doses.