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April 1, 2021

State will open vaccinations to everyone 16 and older

File Photo/Lawrence Emerson
People head into one of the countys first mass vaccination clinics at Fauquier Hospital in January.
Expanding vaccine eligibility to all adults marks an important milestone in our ongoing efforts to put this pandemic behind us, and I thank all of the public health staff, health care workers, vaccinators, and volunteers who have helped make this possible.
— Gov. Ralph Northam
Gov. Ralph Northam announced Thursday that all Virginians 16 and older will be eligible to get the COVID-19 vaccine starting Sunday, April 18, ahead of the President Joe Biden’s May 1 nationwide goal.

Gov. Northam made the announcement during a visit to a vaccination clinic at First Mount Zion Baptist Church in Prince William County, where more than 1,000 vaccines will be administered today.

This news comes as nearly every Virginian in the highest risk groups who has pre-registered for a vaccination appointment has received one, and those still on the pre-registration list will receive appointment invitations within the next two weeks.

“The COVID-19 vaccine is the light at the end of the tunnel — and that light is getting brighter every day as more and more Virginians get vaccinated,” Gov. Northam said. “We continue to work with diverse providers and community partners across the commonwealth to distribute vaccines in a fair and equitable way and ensure those at the highest risk are vaccinated first.

“Expanding vaccine eligibility to all adults marks an important milestone in our ongoing efforts to put this pandemic behind us, and I thank all of the public health staff, health care workers, vaccinators, and volunteers who have helped make this possible.”

With 3.85 million doses of vaccine administered so far in Virginia, more than one in three adults have received at least one dose and one in five Virginians are fully vaccinated.

Virginia administers vaccine doses as quickly as the federal government provides them, the governor said.

Twenty-one of Virginia’s 35 local health districts already have started vaccinating essential workers in Phase 1c after providing appointments to everyone eligible in Phases 1a or 1b on the pre-registration list.

Beginning April 4, districts that have invited everyone pre-registered in Phase 1c may invite members of the general public who have pre-registered. Based on the supply projected by the federal government, all local health districts will have enough vaccine to open appointments to the general public by April 18, according to the governor. Those at highest risk will continue to receive priority in the scheduling process.

To pre-register, visit vaccinate.virginia.gov or call 877-VAX-IN-VA (877-829-4682, TTY users call 7-1-1). Assistance is available in English, Spanish, and more than 100 other languages. Videoconferencing in American Sign Language is also available at vaccinate.virginia.gov.

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