UPDATE: Governor moves up vaccine eligibility for all, to April 15th


3:47 PM: The governor has just announced that all Washingtonians – 16 and up, since no vaccine is yet approved for younger people – will be eligible for vaccination as of April 15th, 2+ weeks earlier than previously announced. This comes on the day 2 million more became eligible. He also warns of a “disturbing uptick” in cases, so he urges everyone to continue precautions such as mask-wearing and social distancing. Updates as the briefing goes.

3:54 PM: He says he’s very concerned about the 28 percent of people over 65 – more than 333,000 in our stqte – who have not yet been vaccinated and so are “living in the danger zone.” So if you know someone that applies to, he says, do everything you can to urge them to go get it. …. Secretary of Health Dr. Umair Shah says the state is now vaccinating 54,000 people a day, beyond its goal, and that 3.2 million doses have now been administered. If internet use is a barrier to someone making an appointment, he notes there’s a hotline, 800-525-0127. He also echoes the warning that “the pandemic’s not over until it’s over.”

4:07 PM: Before getting to media Q&A, the governor moves off the pandemic for a bit and talks about climate legislation in Olympia and DC, as well as hate crimes targeting Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders. “We have to stand up against (hate),” he urges. Today, he also notes, is César Chávez Day. … On to Q/A: Asked if vaccine allocation needs to be moved around because of uneven demand by region, he says there’s only an “infinitesimal” number of wasted doses in the state – “doses are getting into arms.” … Asked about supply to match the increase in eligibility, the governor says yes, supplies are increasing … He was also asked about the national report of 15 million doses of Johnson & Johnson vaccine lost to some kind of factory mistake, but didn’t think that would affect our state much … He also says the state is in the “top third” nationwide in terms of “efficiency” in getting vaccine administered.

4:30 PM: So how long will it take, at current supply levels, to get everyone vaccinated? Dr. Shah reiterates that supplies are continuing to increase – though after a 400,000+-dose week this week it’s going back down under 400,000, pending future increases – they can’t make a specific prediction, as it could change further. … The briefing ends at 4:34 pm; the archived video should be available in the same window above shortly. Here, meantime, is the news release about the eligibility-expansion announcement.

40 Replies to "UPDATE: Governor moves up vaccine eligibility for all, to April 15th"

  • Derek March 31, 2021 (4:07 pm)

    Good! Let’s goooo!summer going to be fun again 

  • CarDriver March 31, 2021 (4:41 pm)

    I do know a couple of eligible people that refuse to get the vaccine. I thanked them for letting me, and others get our shots sooner. Did let them know that if they get covid they’ll get ZERO sympathy from me!!! 

    • Jon Wright March 31, 2021 (5:50 pm)

      Why are they choosing to not get vaccinated?

      • HS March 31, 2021 (6:32 pm)

        Jon, Both my parents refuse to be vaccinated. Why? Because they think covid is not any worse than the flu. They disagree with case numbers and reported deaths. For them, it’s what they have been told by their news outlets since early days. My siblings and I have all tried to talk to them without any luck.

        • WS resident March 31, 2021 (9:54 pm)

          My mom got the 1st vaccine of Pfizer a few weeks ago and now is refusing to get the 2nd dose after she saw some stupid news story.  I’ve done everything that I could to talk her into it… I have to let it go now.As a teacher I’m excited to get my 2nd dose on Friday!

    • Pessoa March 31, 2021 (6:48 pm)

      It’s still a free country – I think. 

      • KBear March 31, 2021 (8:38 pm)

        We’ll all be much freer once everyone is vaccinated. 

      • Anna March 31, 2021 (9:00 pm)

        The vaccine does involve some risks. These are vaccines—particularly the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines—that are unlike any other vaccine that has been used(because of the unique MRNA delivery system) and used on such a wide scale. Many adverse reactions and deaths have been reported after receiving the vaccine. I am extremely cautious about what I put in my body, and I am honestly undecided about whether or not I will get the vaccine. I’m not a covid denier or anti vaccine. The reactions that people are having do scare me a bit, and I want someone to explain to me why everyone I know who has received the vaccine had fairly serious reactions that lasted for days afterwards. People say that that means it’s working, but I don’t know of another vaccine that gives this many people this many reactions, and they all apparently work. I’m glad that the people who want the vaccine are on their way to getting it, but I also don’t see shutting down conversations about the risks associated with the vaccine as helpful.

        • WSB March 31, 2021 (9:23 pm)

          This is the actual CDC page about reactions/deaths:

        • Choice March 31, 2021 (9:48 pm)

          Appreciate your comment and sharing, Anna.

          I think it’s reasonable to have concerns about covid, and it’s also reasonable to have concerns about these vaccines.

          Before now, I never liked getting a flu shot, because in the past I’ve had a reaction and have felt flu-ish afterwards. And, I also care about what I put in my body, and prefer natural wellness approaches.

          However, despite some concerns about these new vaccines, I will be getting vaccinated asap. Covid is a very serious virus, which can be debilitating and deadly. I would rather risk some side effects for a few days from a vaccine than risk fighting covid, possibly in the hospital for months, while on a ventilator.

          It’s your choice. But, I do hope people would choose to gamble with the vaccine and feeling a little crummy, rather than gamble with covid, which could be so much worse.

          Anecdotally, those I’ve spoken with who have had the vaccine have reported the opposite of what you’ve heard… they’ve all said they felt fine afterwards, except for a sore arm and a little tired the next day. That sounds similar to most peoples reaction to a standard flu shot.

          I agree with you this is an important conversation. I hope some folks who have been fully vaccinated will share their experience here. 

          Which vaccine did you receive, when, and did you have any side effects?

          • WSB March 31, 2021 (9:56 pm)

            First person in our household to get vaccinated had the shot five and a half hours ago (Pfizer) and reports only a slightly sore arm, so far.

          • Choice March 31, 2021 (10:03 pm)

            Thanks WSB, hope it goes easy. Keep us posted?

        • HS March 31, 2021 (10:14 pm)

          Anna, I’m linking a local epidemiologists site. She wrote a blog post that addresses some of your questions. https://www.wearedatadriven.com/post/covid-19-vaccines-building-the-plane-as-we-fly-it

        • Looking for the vaccine April 1, 2021 (5:11 am)

          Anna, my husband and I are both age 70. First shot was unremarkable. The second shot left both of us with sore arms at the injection site for a couple of days. I also had a slight rash at the site (not unusual), but since I have several autoimmune disorders I am not surprised. My 99-year-old mother had both shots with absolutely no reaction.  Pfizer vaccine for all of us. We’re all six weeks post our second shots and no further reactions. We have numerous friends who have had the same experience regardless of vaccine.

        • Anne April 1, 2021 (8:20 am)

          Conversations over COVID vaccine concerns should be supported-not shut down. Husband & I (72) have had both Pfizer shots.We experienced sore arm & I had headache after the 2nd-which 2 aspirin took care of.  Our thinking-like  someone else mentioned, was we’d rather deal with possible  side effects of vaccine than the virus , which could include hospitalization, ventilator, (death?) potentially lasting  symptoms, & of course passing the virus to others. We wanted to be as safe as possible so we could at least see our family-who are all vaccinated or about to be. We do know of 2 people (40’s) who -after getting 2nd Moderna dose , felt bad the next day with flu-like symptoms. Hopefully more people will share their experiences . Personally, I feel that for every person who has a bad experience, many more have a positive one. The thing -for us- COVID seems so much more contagious & can be potentially more  (depending on the individual) deadly than the flu.The absolute worst I’ve felt after a shot ??? Could barely move my extremely sore /swollen arm for 2weeks after 2nd Shingles shot. Most I know were fine. 

        • WSREZ April 1, 2021 (10:12 am)

          Anna, what should give you some piece of mind is that the Corona virus has been known of since the 20’s- this isn’t completely new. Also, COVID has lasting effects that they do not know enough about. It is either get vaccinated and know medical professionals and scientists have worked on this, or get COVID and lose you taste/smell for months possibly, feel sick for months on end, etc. All vaccines have individuals who unfortunately, get sick or even die, but this happens with all vaccines. Also, it is known that after many types of vaccines, individuals will feel unwell for a day or two. My puppy just got her second round of shots, and same thing happened with her. I have already received my shots and had no adverse reactions.All in all, the sooner people get vaccinated, the sooner we return to normal. Best of luck and health to you!

        • Sam April 1, 2021 (10:35 am)

          Come on now. Compared to getting COVID, the risks are pretty insignificant. That’s the whole point of a vaccine.

          Especially when you consider a getting vaccinated means you won’t infect (and possibly kill) other people – it’s the obvious, responsible decision to make.

        • rme April 1, 2021 (11:35 am)

          My experience as a 33 year old female healthcare professional with no pre-existing conditions who’s had both doses of Moderna: I was tired after my first dose, very sore arm for two days. After my second dose, I came down with a slight fever and body aches about 10 hours after the shot, and was fine 8 hours after that. 

        • K to the F April 1, 2021 (11:44 am)

          If it’s helpful, my partner and I have both had our first shots with no side effects aside from the usual soreness for a day or two where the needle went in. My parents (in their 70s and 80s) have both been fully vaccinated for a solid month with zero side effects as well.

        • patrickseattlenw@yahoo.com April 1, 2021 (3:49 pm)

          Well said Anna! I also am by no means an anti-vaxxer but am still not 100% sold. That being said….I threw my hat in and waiting for an appointment. 

    • dunnkld March 31, 2021 (8:54 pm)

      We should  be encouraging others to get the vaccine and having honest conversations with the vaccine hesitant about pros and cons and respecting their opinions. I don’t think telling them “you’ll get ZERO sympathy from me!!!” will cut it.

  • flimflam March 31, 2021 (6:03 pm)

    so Inslee notes a disturbing uptick, eh? maybe rushing to get people indoors, maskless in restaurants wasn’t a great idea, let alone flinging it open to  50% for seemingly no good reason?

  • Frustrated March 31, 2021 (6:27 pm)

    They won’t even let me register for dates after the 15th.    Never mind that everyone is eligible by then, don’t bother planning ahead!

  • Brian Feusagach March 31, 2021 (7:15 pm)

    It could be bit too early to be looking for appointments after the 15th. But if this past opening was any indication, available appointments started showing up at CHIFranciscan on May 26th for vaccinations on May 31st through April 3rd at both the Burien and Federal Way locations. They seemed to be one of the few offering this – instead of just collecting information for a wait-list or getting “No Available Appointments” messages.

  • Auntie March 31, 2021 (7:43 pm)

    I notice that the Guv has opened up the vaccine to everyone soon and in the next breath comments on how many “at risk” people haven’t gotten the vaccine yet. Uh, Jay, could it be that there isn’t enough to go around and it’s hard as hell to get scheduled if you’re not very computer savvy? Why not wait until more of the current Tier are able to get vaccinated before opening the floodgates?

    • Bronson April 1, 2021 (7:00 am)

      I will give you one good reason. The elderly aren’t the ones spreading this around. It is the younger people and people who have to be out and about for work, etc. It’s a race against time to get enough people vaccinated to mitigate the risks of mutational variants making the current vaccines ineffective. Personally, and this is a bit controversial, but I think the roll-out has been backwards and should have gone to those between 16-65 first, as they are the ones out and about. The elderly tend to be (not always) less mobile in the community and probably would have spread the virus less. Either way, the response will be a fascinating public health study for decades to come. 

      • Lbalm April 1, 2021 (11:44 am)

        Tell that to the nursing homes who for the first time in a year have no deaths to report. The elderly may not be very mobile, but still have/had the highest *death* rate, that’s why they were prioritized. Now that they are mostly vaccinated, it is time to shift the focus, but people still need to take personal responsibility. How important is it to get on a plane and vacation right now, and yet the news reports the highest numbers of people in a year are doing so.

        • Bronson April 1, 2021 (5:18 pm)

          You actually made my point for me. While we can all appeal for people to do the right thing, care for the common good, etc., I’ve been here long enough to know that in this country that is a pipe dream. Looks at South Beach, etc. There are enough selfish idiots that unfortunately exponentially increase the chance of exposure for the rest of us. Sounds like I’m rewarding them, but unfortunately, this is a math and social problem, and vaccinating those that aren’t spreading it around isn’t taking care of the greater good fast enough.The healthcare workers in those facilities should absolutely be vaccinated, but I just don’t know if it was the right call to do it in this manner when those facilities could have been put/remained on lockdown. This is a classic war decision where there aren’t really any ideal options, and either one is going to cost lives. I guess history will judge if we actually got it right. I do hope so.

    • Foop April 2, 2021 (1:00 pm)

      At this point all the forms and barriers to signing up for the vaccine are the barriers to the vulnerable who aren’t tech savvy, moreso than competition.

  • CarDriver March 31, 2021 (7:43 pm)

    Jon. Good question. I just get a “it may turn out the vaccine isn’t safe/i don’t know anybody that got real sick”. No intelligent reasons just excuses.  

  • AlkiMom March 31, 2021 (8:23 pm)

    I tried to make an appointment for a 63 year old neighbor and couldn’t find anything available. Any suggestions?

    • Oakley34 March 31, 2021 (8:41 pm)

      Try pharmacare on california.

    • Lily March 31, 2021 (8:53 pm)

      Rite aid seems to post their vaccine appointments around 6am if that helps! They schedule about a week out, and there were numerous appointment times open when I reserved times for myself and my boyfriend.

    • SD March 31, 2021 (9:48 pm)

      Alkimom, sign up for the City of Seattle notifications, https://seattle.signetic.com/home/bed98ee5-bb90-eb11-b1ac-000d3a328e28They seem to open up more space for the City vaccination sites every couple of days, including the West Seattle location. 

  • Eileen March 31, 2021 (9:13 pm)

    Alkimom – have you tried the tool for finding appointments by zipcode?  https://vaccinelocator.doh.wa.gov/I've heard trying early in the morning (like after midnight works but cannot confirm as Im not eligible yet.

  • Look west March 31, 2021 (9:18 pm)

    Kitsap County has a surplus, if you have been searching and can’t find one….look for appointments in that county; Bremerton, Silverdale etc…just take the ferry!

  • luckyme March 31, 2021 (11:55 pm)

    https://vaccinelocator.doh.wa.gov/locations/98126I tried again and again after 11pm and finally got one at the Safeway on the 28th ave….my favorite store. You have to be quick and lucky…..need to get the 1st app in before the Open season on April 15. I hope the 2nd dose  appt is easier…

    • Patience April 1, 2021 (7:58 am)

      @LUCKYME:  most vaccination sites will set you up with your 2nd-dose appointment during the 15 minutes that they ask you to wait before leaving the clinic after your 1st-dose.  I believe Safeway does this as well.

  • Cynthia A Craig April 1, 2021 (9:21 am)

    My husband and I received our second Pfizer vaccine six weeks ago. We are both over 65. He had nothing more than a slightly sore arm and I was more tired than usual for one day. I personally have spoken with at least 25 of our friends in the same age group who received either Pfizer or Moderns and if there were any side effects at all the most common was a day of fatigue. One 80 year old had a low fever and was achy for a day. Our sons, 41 and 38, have Muscular Dystrophy and received the first Moderna shot two weeks ago with no side effects. We are still masking and will remain cautious but the sense of relief we feel is huge. 

  • Rick April 1, 2021 (11:06 am)

    I grew by about 10 lbs after covid started and added another 5 after the first shot.  I think that could be a bigger health risk.  As my sister in Anchorage called it – Covid-19 lbs.

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