All adult Oregonians will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine by July 1, Gov. Kate Brown announced this morning.
Brown said that many adults vulnerable to the virus can expect to receive a vaccination much earlier, including people over 45 with underlying conditions and people working on farms and in food-processing warehouses. Homeless people will become eligible by March 29, Brown said. All people working jobs where they interact with the public—from bus drivers to Plaid Pantry clerks—will be allowed to get a shot no later than May 1.
All Oregonians aged 45 and older will be eligible by June 1, and every person over 16 by July 1.
"Yes, you're hearing me correctly," Brown said in a Friday press conference. "Come summer, provided supplies from the federal government continue as planned, any Oregonian who wants the vaccine will be eligible to receive it."
That welcome announcement—the first time Oregon has offered a concrete timeline for most adults to expect a vaccination—comes with a significant caveat: It depends on the state receiving its expected deluge of doses from the federal government.
Brown and Oregon Health Authority director Pat Allen said they based their timeline on the ramped-up delivery of vaccine doses from the feds under President Joe Biden, as well as the expected approval of a third vaccine from Johnson & Johnson. Brown said federal officials have pledged to assist with vaccinations, including sending Federal Emergency Management Agency workers to help with mass vaccination sites in the Portland area, including the Oregon Convention Center, Portland International Airport, and Hillsboro Stadium.
"Not only will FEMA be providing $220 million to reimburse our hospitals, clinics and local public health entities who have stepped up to help vaccinate Oregonians, but we'll also have their people power to support the Tri-County area's high capacity sites," Brown said. "Initially, 20 staff will arrive next week to plug into our operations."
But the timeline comes amid some frustration from Oregon seniors, who became eligible en masse for vaccinations in recent weeks, only to find online appointments impossible to book. Allen said the state will revamp its sign-up system, and expects to vaccinate 75% of all seniors by March 29, the date many other adults become eligible.
A more detailed list of who is eligible when is available here. This is the timeline provided by the governor's office:
Until March 29, Oregon will continue to vaccinate only Oregon seniors, educators, adults in custody as required by a recent Oregon court decision, and any individuals eligible in Phase 1a still remaining.
The vaccination of Oregonians for the continuation of Phase 1b will proceed in two waves.
Beginning March 29, the following groups of Oregonians will be eligible for vaccination:
Adults age 45 to 64 with underlying health conditions as defined by the CDC
Seasonally impacted frontline workers, such as migrant seasonal farmworkers, seafood and agricultural workers, and food processing workers
Currently displaced victims of the September 2020 wildfires
People living in low-income and congregate senior housing
Individuals experiencing houselessness
No later than May 1, the following groups of Oregonians will be eligible:
All other frontline workers as defined by the CDC
Individuals age 16-45 with underlying health conditions
Multigenerational household members
No later than June 1, Phase 2 of vaccination will begin with all adults aged 45 to 64. And, no later than July 1, all Oregonians 16 and over will be eligible to receive a vaccine.