Alaska Becomes First State To Offer COVID-19 Vaccine To Older Teenagers

In Alaska, residents aged 16 and older will now have access to the COVID-19 vaccine, as other states continue to roll out their vaccination programs to gradually increasing groups.

COVID vaccine distirbution
[Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images]

Across the United States, individuals are logging on to check their state’s official health websites and figure out what category they fall into. Some states moved teachers to the front of the line, in an effort to reopen schools. According to EdWeek, there are only half a dozen states left where teachers can’t yet access the vaccine.

The Biden Administration has promised that by the end of May, Stat News reports, the vaccine will be available to every adult who is willing to receive it.

However, vaccination for children and teenagers could take longer, as we continue to wait for the vaccine to be approved for younger recipients, and this could mean further delays on schools opening in person.

Alaska, however, is jumping ahead. Governor Mike Dunleavy shared on Tuesday that vaccines would now be available to every resident aged 16 and older, effective immediately.

His announcement encouraged Alaskans to receive the vaccine, saying, “A healthy community means a healthy economy. With widespread vaccinations available to all Alaskans who live or work here, we will no doubt see our economy grow and our businesses thrive.”

Who is eligible for the vaccine? According to Commissioner of the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services Adam Crum, “If Alaskans had any questions about vaccine eligibility and criteria, I hope today’s announcement clears it up for you, simply put, you are eligible to get the vaccine.”

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