Louisiana residents age 16 and older now eligible for COVID-19 vaccine

By David Jacobs | The Center Square

The Louisiana Department of Health released Monday the list of 608 providers with a share of the state’s COVID-19 vaccine doses for this week, the first when almost every state resident is eligible for a dose.

Vaccinations had been limited to certain job categories, people with health conditions that make them more vulnerable to the coronavirus that causes COVID-19 and residents who are at least 65 years old. Starting this week, anyone age 16 or older is eligible to make an appointment for a vaccination.

A list of providers, including contact information, is available on the health department’s website.

Three types of approved vaccines are available. The Pfizer and Moderna vaccines require two doses to get the full benefit, and the Johnson & Johnson vaccine requires a single dose. The Pfizer vaccine is approved for 16- and 17-year-olds and older, and the other two are approved for only adults.

Appointments generally are necessary to get a vaccine, though events that welcome walk-ins occasionally are held.

Louisiana officials last week said they expected to receive more than 148,000 first doses from the federal government this week, easily the biggest allocation so far. That total doesn’t count direct shipments to the federal government’s pharmacy partners or more than 32,000 doses that had been reserved for long-term care facilities that now will be available to the general public, officials said.

“In the not-too-distant future, we’re going to have doses for everybody that wants one,” Gov. John Bel Edwards said Wednesday. “What we need to do is make sure that everybody wants one. Doses in and of themselves do nothing to end the pandemic, but vaccinations will.”

More than 1.1 million of Louisiana’s approximately 4.65 million residents had gotten at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and almost 655,000 were fully vaccinated, according to the state health department’s most-recent report.