Civic News

When you’ll (likely) be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine in Delaware

A look at the Delaware Division of Public Health's recently updated timeline.

If you’re not a frontline health worker, resident of a nursing home or a high-level elected official, you probably know that you’re not yet eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine yet.

When will the general public be able to queue up? In Delaware, there will be phases, not unlike the phases established for business reopening. (We’re still in Phase 2, with a stay-at-home advisory through Jan. 11).

The Delaware Division of Public Health published its COVID-19 Vaccine Allocation Framework at the end of December, detailing how the state is making decisions about how to disperse the still-limited vaccine most effectively and ethically to mitigate the pandemic’s deadliness.

Phase 1A, which kicked off Dec. 15, includes those healthcare professionals and residents of long-term care facilities and is expected to last at least through February.

When Phase 1B kicks off in late January, you’ll be eligible for a free vaccine if you are 65 or older or a frontline essential worker, which includes these fields:

  • Education
  • Food and agriculture
  • Public transit
  • Grocery stores
  • Postal service
  • Manufacturing
  • Corrections
  • Fire and police

The rest of Phase 1 will offer the vaccine to those ages 16 to 64 with high-risk medical conditions, as well as those in homeless shelters, group homes and corrections facilities. It also includes workers at higher risk of catching the disease because of their profession, such as those in food service, construction and IT.

In the spring, Phase 2 will begin, vaccinating any other essential workers unable to work from home at all times and people with moderate underlying health conditions, as well as anyone 50 and up.


From there, the process will phase into the general public — and yes, even if you are not an essential worker, your vaccine will be free.

The proposed vaccine allocation graph shows the vaccination process taking approximately 32 weeks, or seven months:

An infographic showing Delaware’s proposed vaccine allocation phasing as of Dec. 29, 2020. (Screenshot via Delaware Division of Public Health)

If you have questions or are eligible and don’t know how to get your vaccine, email or call the hotline at 302-672-6150.

Companies: State of Delaware
Series: Coronavirus
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