Are you a Baby Boomer who’s wondering when you’re going to be able to get the Covid-19 vaccine? It’s a little confusing at the moment but we’ll try to give you a little more clarity here.
First of all, if you were born between 1946 and 1964 (aged between 56-74 years old) you’re a Baby Boomer. As you likely know, the danger of serious complications from Covid-19 increases with age. Most Covid-19 complications and deaths occur among those 75 and older but even younger Baby Boomers are at high risk of Covid-19 complications, especially if there are pre-existing conditions like obesity or Diabetes.
An end to the COVID-19 pandemic appears to be in sight, with the US rolling out its nationwide Novel Coronavirus vaccination program and countless other countries pre-ordering tens of millions of doses as vaccines.
However, there’s still a long way to go, and governments all around the world have several difficult decisions to make with regards to who they offer vaccinations to first.
There are many factors to consider, and we will almost certainly see differing approaches and priorities from country to country.
When Will Baby Boomers Be Vaccinated?
This is very much still up in the air, but the CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) panel, which is responsible for deciding who should get priority, is already trying to determine which coronavirus vaccination strategy will be most effective in curbing the spread of the deadly virus.
The panel recently published its first official coronavirus vaccine distribution guidelines and earlier this month, it voted 13 to 1 in favor of giving priority in the early phases of vaccine distribution to the US’ 20 million+ health care workers, in addition residents of retirement facilities and care homes.
However, it is yet to decide the order in which other groups should be vaccinated.
Seniors living in their own homes are also likely to be high on the list, but it’s impossible to estimate exactly how soon they’ll be offered a vaccine due to the CDC itself not yet publishing guidance on the matter.
Even at this early stage of vaccination planning, some differences in the United States’ strategy to other countries are already showing. For example, the UK’s Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunization decided to give the first round of vaccines only to residents of long term care facilities, not health care workers as well.
In the US and beyond, vulnerable people – the elderly and people suffering with diseases which put them at an increased risk of death if they contract coronavirus – are likely to be high up on the priority list, perhaps just below health care workers.
Even within this group there is likely to be different priorities assigned, depending on the severity of the ailment and the age of seniors (with older Americans getting priority as they are considered more vulnerable.)
Essential workers, of which there are close to 100 million in the US, are another group which are likely to be offered the vaccine before the rest of the population.
Some experts have even argued that ethnic minorities should be given priority.
Lawrence Gostin, a health law expert at George Washington University, said:
“I think there is a very strong ethical justification for giving considerable advantage to people who are socially vulnerable, and I would go further and give explicit priority to racial minorities. COVID has really amplified public concerns about racial and social injustice.”
Which COVID-19 Vaccine Will Baby Boomers Get in The US?
There are several COVID-19 vaccines which have been developed by various research organizations and pharmaceutical companies around the world.
Governments are still evaluating data from clinical trials to determine which is best, but it’s likely most countries will use a mixture of different coronavirus vaccines, as supplies of each will be limited and some may be better than others in certain circumstances.
A Quick Summary
- Several COVID-19 vaccines have been developed, and the US has already started vaccinating people in limited numbers.
- There are several different factors to consider when deciding which groups to prioritize.
- So far, the US has only decided that health care workers and residents of care homes and retirement facilities will be given immediate priority.
- Seniors living outside such facilities are likely to be high on the list as well, but it’s impossible to speculate exactly how soon they’ll be offered a vaccine due to the CDC itself not yet publishing guidance on the matter.