Good Question: How is vaccination eligibility assigned within groups in N.C.?

Updated: Mar. 17, 2021 at 7:28 PM EDT
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CHARLOTTE, N.C. (WBTV) - Thousands of more people became eligible in North Carolina on Wednesday to receive the COVID-19 vaccination.

The state just opened vaccinations to Group 4, which includes people who have underlying health conditions that could put them at risk for a severe case of coronavirus.

How did we get here?

We’re asking health officials how North Carolina decided on who falls into which vaccination group.

This wasn’t always the plan.

Back when the state first outlined its vaccination plan, people with underlying conditions were way up at the top.

In January, they were bumped down.

Our Good Question is -- what goes into that decision-making process?

Dr. Charlene Wong, N.C. Department of Health and Human Services Chief Policy Officer for COVID-19, breaks down why the groups are divided the way they are.

“Of course, we want everyone to be able to get the vaccine as quickly and fairly as possible, but because of that very limited supply, we did need to make those choices,” Wong said. “We, in North Carolina, certainly decided that we wanted to follow the risk of folks getting COVID-19 and getting really sick with COVID-19, as well as their risk of being exposed to COVID-19, because we wanted to vaccinate first those who would be able to so we could save lives and slow the spread of COVID-19 in our state.”

You can listen to more of her answers by subscribing to the Good Question podcast.

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