New CT COVID vaccination plan: Who’s eligible, when can you register?

Open Door homeless shelter case manager Melexies Mena recievs the injection as the shelter administers its first coronavirus vaccines for residents and staff by the Norwalk Community Healthcare Center Friday, February 12, 2021, at the Smiloe Lice Center in Norwalk, Conn.

As Connecticut ramps up its COVID vaccination efforts, Gov. Ned Lamont on Monday announced a change to the state’s distribution process — focusing on age-based groups.

Under this new plan, people between the ages of 55 and 64, educators and child care providers will be eligible to receive the vaccine as of March 1. Starting that day, those who fall under this category can begin registering for their first dose.

Appointments in Connecticut can be made by phone from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. daily at 877-918-2224. Individuals can also schedule an appointment directly with a vaccine provider — like local health clinics — through VAMS.

According to the plan, those included in the expanded eligibility are teachers, paraprofessionals, substitute teachers, in-class volunteers, school custodial staff, school food services workers, school bus drivers, school resource officers, social services and mental health personnel who work in schools, before- and after-school program staff, coaches, in-school administrative staff and child care professionals.

Board of Education members, adult education, higher education and staff not working in schools are not eligible unless they meet a different criteria.

The state said those who become eligible on March 1 under the new expansion can expect to hear from their employer and/or local health director by that day about options for appointments to receive the first vaccine dose.

According to Lamont’s plan, the following groups can begin registering for COVID vaccines on these dates, but not beforehand:

March 1: Ages 55 to 64; and educators and child care providers

March 22: Ages 45 to 54

April 12: Ages 35 to 44

May 3: Ages 16 to 34

The expansion of Phase 1B was initially intended to include frontline essential workers and those with preexisiting medical conditions that put them at greater risk of COVID-19 complications. These groups are not prioritized under the new plan.

Those who were eligible under Phase 1A or residents or staff of congregate settings remain eligible and can still schedule vaccination appointments if needed.

More information about Connecticut’s vaccine rollout timeline and eligibility can be found on the state website.

Connecticut Media Group