The rollout of the approved COVID-19 vaccines (Pfizer’s and Moderna’s mRNA vaccines) in Illinois has been a bit disjointed and confusing so far, but clarity is slowly coming as Governor Pritzker recently announced that Illinois will move to Phase 1b, opening vaccinations for residents ages 65 or older and front-line essential workers on Monday, January 25th. These are the current COVID-19 Vaccine Phases in Chicago and in the State of Illinois, although they’re subject to change:
Earlier this week, Rush began reaching out to more than 28,000 Rush patients who live in Chicago and are over 65 years old through text, email, phone calls, MyChart accounts and a recorded phone message, inviting them to schedule their vaccine appointments here. They also announced that:
“All Rush patients in Phase 1b will have the opportunity to schedule their appointments over the coming weeks to months, depending on vaccine supply at Rush. We are starting with Chicago residents per Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH) guidelines but will offer vaccine appointments more broadly to all Rush patients ages 65 and older and all others who qualify to be part of Phase 1b as early as next week.”
As above, exactly when non-Chicago Rush patients will be able to schedule vaccination appointments at Rush still is undetermined. Also, I’ve heard that the exact start date of Phase 1c and Phase 2 vaccinations remains somewhat flexible as well. One important and relevant issue is how “pre-existing issues” are defined for those aged 65 to 74, and those with significant pre-existing medical issues for those less than 65. At this point we still don’t have reliable guidance.
Although Rush technically has no waiting list, submitting this COVID-19 Vaccination Interest Survey will help facilitate planning and future contact for everyone:
This release from NBC Chicago earlier today provides the latest news update regarding Phase 1b vaccinations in Illinois. It’s worth tracking future news and updates through this NBC Chicago site.
According to NBC: “Pritzker said Friday beginning that this week, the state will be standing up “hundreds of vaccination sites across the state, including retail pharmacy chains, Illinois National Guard mobile teams, state-run mass vaccination locations in northern, central and southern Illinois, hospitals and urgent care locations, and ultimately, doctors’ offices and large employers who can host their own workplace clinics.”
Lastly, Walgreens, CVS, other large pharmacies and some health clinics are beginning to schedule patients to receive vaccinations all over the Chicago area. If more convenient for you, it would be worthwhile to register and potentially lock in vaccination appointments at these facilities.
Oak Street Health clinics (many in Chicago and around the Chicagoland area):
For those who live in Indiana, residents over 65 can register to receive the vaccine through the following site:
I will continue to update you via email and website posts. Please stay safe and well.
Scott Palmer, MD