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Additional groups eligible for vaccination

Kern County Public Health Services Department

On March 15, COVID-19 vaccine became available to those with certain health conditions, disabilities, illness and living spaces or work environments that put them at higher risk for serious COVID-19 illness.

Residents are encouraged to check with their healthcare provider regarding eligibility. Providers will use their clinical judgment to vaccinate individuals aged 16-64 who are determined to be at the very highest risk to get very sick from COVID-19. The severe health conditions eligible include:

• Cancer, current with weakened immune system

• Chronic kidney disease, stage 4 or above

• Chronic pulmonary disease, oxygen dependent

• Down syndrome

• Solid organ transplant, leading to a weakened immune system

• Pregnancy

• Sickle cell disease

• Heart conditions, such as heart failure, coronary artery disease, or cardiomyopathies (but not hypertension)

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

• Type 2 diabetes mellitus with hemoglobin A1c level greater than 7.5 percent

Healthcare providers may also vaccinate individuals with developmental or other severe disabilities or illness if:

• The individual is likely to develop severe life-threatening illness or death from COVID-19 infection;

• Acquiring COVID-19 will limit an individual’s ability to receive ongoing care or services vital to their well-being and survival; or

• Providing adequate and timely COVID care will be particularly challenging as a result of the individual’s disability.

To protect confidentiality, verification documentation of the diagnosis or type of disability is not required but instead anyone meeting the eligibility requirements will be asked to sign a self-attestation that they meet the criteria for high-risk medical conditions or disabilities. Learn more here: http://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/vaccine-high-risk-factsheet.aspx.

Additionally, individuals who live or work in a congregate residential setting, such as an incarceration/detention facility, homeless shelter, or behavioral health facility, will be eligible for COVID-19 vaccination. This includes people experiencing homelessness, who may transition into congregate settings at short notice.

Finally, public transit workers, including airport workers for commercial airlines (but not private airplanes), will be eligible for COVID-19 vaccination.

Updated eligibility requirements can be found here: http://www.cdph.ca.gov/Programs/CID/DCDC/Pages/COVID-19/VaccineAllocationGuidelines.aspx.

To make your COVID-19 vaccination appointment, please visit MyTurn.ca.gov or call (833) 422-4255. Residents can also visit kernpublichealth.com to view an interactive map that includes more than 100 local vaccination sites with instructions on how to schedule appointments. Eventually, MyTurn will become the only way to schedule vaccination appointments statewide.