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Pa. Still In Phase 1A While Other States Drop Coronavirus Vaccine Eligibility Requirements

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) -- While other states are dropping their eligibility, Pennsylvania is still in Phase 1A of its coronavirus vaccine rollout.

It was a long time coming but Bernice King, her daughter and son-in-law finally got their first vaccine doses. All three were in line at Heinz Field on Monday to get their second.

All are 65 years and older and belong to Group 1A. But they believe it's time to open up eligibility.

In New York, everyone over 50 is eligible. Ohio dropped its eligibility from 40 years old to everyone over 16. West Virginia is already vaccinating people 16 and older.

The Pennsylvania Department of Health issued a statement, saying, in part:

"The state is well on its way to completing 1A while moving forward with plans to vaccinate those under 1B while adding targeted industry vaccinations."

The most stunning example is Spartan Pharmacy, which has a vaccine clinic scheduled for Tuesday and had more than 1,000 openings as of noon Monday.

Pharmacist Adam Rice says it's a clear sign the state needs to expand eligibility.

Rice: We need to get shots in arms and achieve herd immunity.

KDKA's Andy Sheehan: So it is time to move down to 1B?

Rice: From what I'm seeing, yes. And the public feels the same way.

Governor Tom Wolf has indicated he will be expanding eligibility soon but will first take care of the estimated four million Pennsylvanians in 1A.


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