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Eligibility for the COVID-19 Vaccination Opens to All Minnesotans Ages 16 and Up

3/31/2021

Minnesota will expand COVID-19 vaccination eligibility to all state residents 16 and older starting on Tuesday, March 30. Those at highest risk for contracting COVID-19 will continue to be prioritized for vaccination.

Gov. Tim Walz unveiled the expansion of vaccine admissibility today at a press conference. The Minnesota Department of Health is expecting a jump in vaccine deliveries from the federal government the first week of April. Even with the increase in vaccine shipments, demand will continue to exceed supply for the time being, so not everyone eligible will be able to immediately make an appointment.   

The opening of eligibility comes at a critical time as public health officials are increasingly concerned about variants of the disease fueling upticks of cases and hospitalizations. In recent weeks, 479 cases of the B.1.1.7 strain, sometimes referred to as the UK or British variant, have been confirmed in Minnesota. Active cases of COVID-19 have been trending downward in Minnesota since January, though currently, younger Minnesotans have lead case growth: new infections have jumped 9% in 10- to 14-year-olds in the state. 

More than 878,000 people—about 15.8 percent of the state’s population—have completed their vaccinations, while more than 1.4 million, or 26.5 percent, have received at least one dose, which includes about 79 percent of people age 65 and older. Minnesota’s measured vaccine roll-out program has ensured shots go first to the highest priority groups, including the elderly, those with underlying health conditions, long-term care residents, health-care workers, and child-care and school employees. 

Since the pandemic began, the state has recorded 6,789 total deaths from COVID-19, of which 4,248 involve people connected to long-term care or assisted living settings. 

For up-to-date COVID-19 vaccine data, visit the MN Dept. of Health’s COVID-19 Vaccine Summary page.