On the one-year anniversary of its first confirmed COVID-19 case, Louisiana is widening coronavirus vaccine eligibility to anyone 16 years and older who has among two dozen high-risk medical conditions, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced Tuesday.
The broader vaccine eligibility sweeps hundreds of thousands of additional people onto the access list — starting immediately.
The Democratic governor’s decision adds anyone age 16 to 54 if they have hypertension asthma, cancer, diabetes, sickle cell disease, chronic kidney or liver disease, chronic pulmonary disease, Down syndrome, heart conditions, weakened immune system or several other preexisting conditions. Smokers and people who are overweight also are eligible for the immunization. In addition, people who work at homeless shelters, jails and group homes now have access.
Those who are 16 or 17 will only have access to the Pfizer vaccine because it’s currently the lone vaccine available in the United States authorized for people that age.