As Chicago prepares to expand vaccine eligibility to more residents as it moves to Phase 1C later this month, who will qualify?
Phase 1C, set to begin on March 29, will include those with underlying health conditions and essential workers like restaurant employees, those in personal care services, retail workers and more, officials announced Wednesday.
But the list of underlying conditions is not the same as the one being used for the state’s Phase 1B Plus. Vaccinations at city-run sites will also be limited to Chicago residents only.
Here’s a breakdown of who is and isn’t eligible under Phase 1C in Chicago:
Underlying medical conditions
Cancer (current diagnosis), Cardiac, cardiovascular, and cerebrovascular disorders (including heart disease, coronary artery disease, and hypertension or high blood pressure), Chronic Kidney Disease, Chronic respiratory disorders (including cystic fibrosis, moderate to severe asthma, pulmonary fibrosis, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease/emphysema [COPD]), Diabetes (Type 1 and Type 2), Disability: physical, developmental, visual, hearing, or mental, Neurologic conditions (including dementia), Down Syndrome, Immunocompromised state (weakened immune system) including from blood or bone marrow transplant, immune deficiencies, HIV, use of corticosteroids, or use of other immune weakening medicines, Liver disease (including hepatitis), Pregnancy, Obesity: BMI ≥30 kg/m2, Schizophrenia spectrum disorders, Sickle Cell Disease, Thalassemia, persons with disabilities
Clergy and religious organizations
People 65 years of age and older; where possible, prioritizing Chicagoans 75 years and older and Chicagoans age 65-74 with underlying medical conditions
Workers supporting the energy sector, including those involved in energy manufacturing, distribution, repair
Banks; currency exchanges; consumer lending; credit unions; appraisers; title companies; financial markets; financial institutions; institutions that sell financial services; accounting services, and insurance services
Food and beverage service
Restaurant and other facilities that prepare and serve food (including bars); entities that provide food services
Workers in educational institutions – including junior colleges, four-year colleges, and universities, technical schools, trade schools, educational support services, and administration of education programs
Information technology and communications
Internet, video and telecommunications systems, consumer electronics repair, computer and office machine repair
Workers providing legal services or supporting the operations of the judicial system, including judges, lawyers, paralegals, legal assistants, process servers, couriers, bail bond agents, parole officers, probation offices, court personnel, and others providing legal assistance or performing legal functions
Newspapers, periodicals, television, radio, and other media services, news dealers and newsstands, broadcasting, news syndicates, printing, and book publishers
Other community- or government-based operations and essential functions
Other governmental employees; community based essential functions (e.g. urban planning, offices that provide basic needs such as food, childcare, shelter, and social services); workers in libraries
Personal care services and hygiene
Businesses that provide personal care services, such as hair, nails, and non-medical massage.
Laundromats, dry cleaners, industrial laundry services, and laundry service providers
Public health entities; pharmaceutical, medical device and equipment, and biotechnology companies
Workers that ensure public safety systems function properly, including building inspectors, civil engineers, chemical engineers, aerospace engineers and hazardous materials responders. Workers who construct and maintain roads, highways, railroads, and ports. Cybersecurity operations workers
Workers in retail stores including but not limited to stores that sell alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages, medication not requiring a medical prescription, other non-grocery products (e.g. electronics, optical goods, books, etc.), other household consumer products, wholesalers, licensed cannabis dispensaries and cultivation centers
Shelter and housing
Hardware stores and businesses; construction and maintenance of buildings, real estate; hotel and motel workers
Transportation and logistics
Workers at gas stations; auto and bike supply and repair; businesses that supply shipping and delivery services; couriers; warehouses; private mail; Airline workers not included in 1b; workers in rail, water, truck, charter bus transportation or transportation rental
Water and wastewater
Workers involved in wastewater treatment and operations; sanitary and storm maintenance crews performing emergency and essential maintenance of systems
Those already eligible under Phases 1A and 1B will also remain eligible in 1C.
Chicago Department of Public Health Commissioner Dr. Allison Arwady noted that eligibility at city-run vaccination sites will be limited to only Chicago residents.
“I want to clarify that beginning March 29, only Chicago residents will be able to be vaccinated at City of Chicago vaccination sites,” Arwady said. “We’ve asked health care providers to continue prioritizing vaccination for their existing patients who have the most underlying conditions, so we don’t require residency requirements for you to get vaccinated with your regular doctor or when we are doing employer-focused vaccinations, which is likely to be able to begin, probably more in earnest in May.”
Arwady said the city won’t force a residency requirement, but said for public vaccination sites “at least for the next couple of months, we will be limiting that eligibility for Chicago residents.”
The next phase begins on March 29, but officials cautioned that not all who are eligible will be able to get an appointment right away.
“What this shift to phase 1C doesn’t mean is that we’ll have enough vaccine for those who are newly eligible right away,” the mayor said. “We are optimistic that we will continue to see a steady flow of vaccine in March, that April will even look better, but we want to make sure that we manage folks’ expectations. It will take us some time because of the limited supply that we are still getting, but hope is on the way. We are expected to receive more vaccines over the course of this next phase.”
Chicago remains under Phase 1B, which includes frontline essential workers and residents age 65 and older, as well as health care workers and long-term care facility staff and residents who were eligible under Phase 1A of the city’s rollout.
The city opted out of expanding to Phase 1B Plus alongside the state, which made those with certain underlying medical conditions eligible, due to what it said was a lack of supply.
Already, many residents eligible under Phase 1B Plus of the state’s rollout can get vaccinated at the federally-run United Center mass vaccination site.
“This marks a major increase in eligibility,” Arwady said. “And that means that in April and May, we will be focused on vaccinating people with underlying conditions and essential workers, especially those who can’t work from home, but we’re going to keep our focus on anybody who didn’t get the vaccine yet in 1A or 1B, and continue to make sure that where people are getting a two-dose vaccine series, they get that on time.”
For a complete look at where and how you can make an appointment in Illinois or where you can receive vaccine information for your area, click here.