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Idaho Will Vaccinate Older Residents First, But Will Factor In Medical Conditions

Photo by Steven Cornfield on Unsplash

Idaho’s Coronavirus Vaccine Advisory Committee took votes Friday for how to prioritize the next group eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine.



The committee decided to prioritize this group — Group 3 — by age and by medical condition. The members were considering simply going with an age-based approach, favored by some states like Connecticut, because of the ease for public and the providers to understand and validate age-based qualifications. 


On Friday, the committee ultimately decided to factor in medical conditions, too. 


Several voting members spoke during the meeting about how including people with high-risk medical conditions would allow the state to achieve more equity in its vaccine rollout. 


Idaho will follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s list of underlying medical conditions to determine eligibility based on health risk. Those conditions include cancer, kidney disease, smoking, obesity and asthma. 


The Idaho Department of Health and Welfare estimates this priority group will be able to get the vaccine in early April. 


The state will likely work its way down age brackets, starting with people 55-64 years of age. Within each age bracket, people with at least one medical condition would be eligible for two weeks before those without medical conditions. 


Idaho’s Coronavirus Vaccine Advisory Committee votes are recommendations that Gov. Brad Little reviews for final consideration.

This is a developing story and will be updated with more information.
Find reporter Rachel Cohen on Twitter @racheld_cohen  
Copyright 2021 Boise State Public Radio