Beginning Monday, Nebraskans 18 and older will be able to receive COVID-19 vaccines at pharmacies statewide that are participating in the Federal Retail Pharmacy program.
The doses are in addition to the weekly allocation of vaccinations being distributed by the state's 19 public health districts, according to an email from the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services.
Past requirements on ages, health conditions and critical infrastructure worker status are being lifted in a new directed health measure that takes effect Monday morning. It will allow Nebraskans in one county or health district to sign up for an appointment in another, as long as vaccine availability exists, in an attempt to expedite distribution across the state.
Last week, the state officially moved to Phase 2A of its vaccination program, which qualified people 50 and older for a shot. But some health districts were able to go much farther down the list.
In the district covered by Public Health Solutions, including Gage, Jefferson, Saline, Thayer and Fillmore counties, people 18 and over were able to sign up for clinics beginning Thursday.
The North Central District Health Department, based in O'Neill, announced Wednesday that people in that district 30 and older were eligible to get vaccinated. Some areas of the Panhandle Public Health District also moved to vaccinating people as young as 30 in the past week.
Meanwhile, Douglas County only started offering the vaccine to people 55 and older in the past week, and the health department there said it will move forward in five-year increments.
Lancaster County only had one first-dose clinic this week, after doing multiple clinics the past few weeks.
Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Director Pat Lopez said Tuesday that the department was being conservative to ensure it has enough doses to provide second shots to people in the coming weeks.
Walmart, Kohll’s and Hy-Vee are among pharmacies in Nebraska that currently have public scheduling portals. Registration can also be completed on the state site at vaccinate.ne.gov.