The ISD 318 school district is encouraging families to sign up for the Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Connector. The new tool helps Minnesotans find out when, where and how they can get their COVID-19 vaccine. 

“When a Minnesotan becomes eligible to receive a vaccine under state guidelines, the Vaccine Connector will alert them of their eligibility, connect them to resources to schedule an appointment, and notify them if there are vaccination opportunities in their area,” according to an announcement from the office of Minnesota Governor Tim Walz. “Minnesotans will still make appointments directly through a registered vaccinator.”

The website asks enrollees for their age, address, occupation, medical history and other information that may affect when they are eligible for a vaccine. Optional questions include race, gender and sexual orientation data. This is the first time the state has provided vaccine guidance for the general public. 

“We still have a frustratingly limited vaccine supply from the federal government, but every Minnesotan should know their chance to get a vaccine will come,” Walz said in a statement accompanying the announcement. “We need to make it as easy as possible for every Minnesotan to get the vaccine when it’s their turn — no matter where they live and no matter their personal circumstances. The options we’re providing will help make that happen.”

People currently eligible for vaccines include health care personnel, long-term care residents, people age 65 years and older, pre-kindergarten through grade 12 educators and child care workers. According to recent information from the Minn. Department of Health, the next round of people eligible for the vaccine in early spring will be people with specific high-risk health conditions such as sickle cell disease, Down Syndrome, immunocompromised from an organ transplant, active cancer treatment, oxygen-dependent chronic lung and health conditions (COPD and CHF). Also included in the next group will be targeted essential workers, specifically food processing plant workers. Vaccines for the general public are expected to be available this summer. 

Minnesotans 18 years of age and older can sign for the Minnesota COVID-19 Vaccine Connector and there is no cost to register. To register, visit mn.gov/vaccineconnector to sign up.

 

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