Governor Laura Kelly Announces Kansas Will Move To Phase 3 and 4 of COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution

TOPEKA – Today, Governor Laura Kelly announced the state will move to Phase 3 and 4 of Kansas’ COVID-19 vaccination plan on March 22, 2021. With this move, individuals between ages 16 and 64 with a preexisting medical condition and other non-healthcare workers in critical infrastructure will be eligible for vaccination.

“Thanks to an increased supply in vaccine, Kansas will begin vaccinating individuals who qualify in either Phase 3 or Phase 4 on March 22,” said Governor Laura Kelly. “This expedited timeline will allow Kansans to get back to work, back to school, and back to a more normal way of life. I urge all Kansans to do their part by getting vaccinated when it is their turn and continuing to follow the public health guidance, so we can return back to normal.”

Kansans now eligible to be vaccinated include:

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• Those aged 16 through 64 with conditions that increase the risk for severe illness from COVID-19, including: 
o Cancer; 
o Down Syndrome; 
o Certain heart conditions; 
o Type 1 & 2 diabetes; 
o Pregnancy;
o Asthma;
o Cystic fibrosis;
o Liver disease; 
o Neurological conditions like dementia; 
o And other medical risks.   

• And other non-health care workers in critical infrastructure who cannot work remotely, including: 
o Agricultural and food workers not included in previous phases; 
o Workers performing in-person activities indoors; 
o Utility workers; 
o Social service and government workers not included in previous phases; 
o Logistics workers, such as truck transportation workers and couriers; 
o Water and wastewater workers; 
o Shelter, housing, and finance workers; 
o And information technology and communication workers.

This announcement made one week ahead of time, will give counties with vaccination events planned an opportunity to finish vaccinating Kansans in Phases 1 and 2 and will ensure providers have enough time to prepare and notify Kansans who will be eligible in the newly combined Phase 3 and 4. Under this expedited timeline, Kansas is expected to move into the final phase of vaccinations by no later than May 1, 2021.

Additionally, Governor Kelly announced the state will activate more providers to complete vaccinations, including safety-net clinics, pharmacies, hospitals, and medical practices. Kansas will also partner with the federal government to set up mass vaccination sites in Kansas to increase the number of vaccinations possible per day.

Kansans who need help identifying if they are eligible should contact their local health department. Kansans can also utilize the “Find My Vaccine” mapping tool at KansasVaccine.Gov to locate a provider near them with vaccines available.

To view the updated COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization plan, click here.

To view the updated COVID-19 Vaccine Prioritization plan in Spanish, click here.

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Derek Nester
Derek Nester
Derek Nester was born and raised in Blue Rapids and graduated from Valley Heights High School in 2000. He attended Cowley College in Arkansas City and Johnson County Community College in Overland Park studying Journalism & Media Communications. In 2002 Derek joined Taylor Communications, Inc. in Salina, Kansas working in digital media for 550 AM KFRM and 100.9 FM KCLY. Following that stop, he joined Dierking Communications, Inc. stations KNDY AM & FM as a board operator and fill-in sports play-by-play announcer. Starting in 2005 Derek joined the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network as a Studio Coordinator at 101 The Fox in Kansas City, a role he would serve for 15 years culminating in the Super Bowl LIV Championship game broadcast. In 2020 he moved to Audacy, formerly known as Entercom Communications, Inc. and 106.5 The Wolf and 610 Sports Radio, the new flagship stations of the Kansas City Chiefs Radio Network, the largest radio network in the NFL. Through all of this, Derek continues to serve as the Digital Media Director for Sunflower State Radio, the digital and social media operations of Dierking Communications, Inc. and the 6 radio stations it owns and operates across Kansas.

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