COVID-19 vaccine is not likely to be available to the public until spring 2021 or later
Dane County is following Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ (DHS) guidelines for vaccine prioritization. We do not decide who is in each tier. The following groups are currently eligible for vaccine:
- Frontline healthcare workers
- Fire and police personnel
- EMS staff
- People who are 65 years old or older
If you are in Tier 1a and do not get vaccinated now, you will continue to be eligible as we vaccinate future tiers. As someone in Tier 1a, you will be prioritized should you decide to get vaccinated in the future.
Medical workers classified as Tier 1a are currently eligible for vaccine. This is defined as “Individuals who provide direct patient service (compensated and uncompensated) or engage in healthcare services that place them into contact with patients who are able to transmit SARS-CoV-2, and/or infectious material containing SARS-CoV-2 virus.” See a list of medical workers who are eligible in Tier 1a. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services has listed these people as eligible medical workers:
- Anesthesia related team members
- Behavior health providers, including psychologists, therapists, counselors
- Certified nursing assistant, nursing assistant, nurse aide, medical assistant
- Clinical ethicist
- Dental services, including dentist, dental hygienist, dental assistants
- Direct care personnel, for example, people who provide direct care to patients, including in their homes (for example, personal care assistant; home health worker; adult day service providers; paid and unpaid caregivers in Family Care, Family Care Partnership, and IRIS; paid and unpaid caregivers of children in special needs programs, including Children’s Waivers, CCOP, B3, Children with Medical Complexity, CCF WAM and Katie Beckett Medicaid)
- Emergency medical responders (EMR), including emergency medical technician/paramedic including all levels of EMRs
- Environmental services, food & nutrition, buildings & grounds in patient care setting
- Funeral home worker, coroners, and medical examiners
- Health care trainees
- Hospice workers
- Massage therapists
- Nurse, including community settings
- Long-term care facility inspectors and oversight staff (including 1-2 bed Adult Family Homes and Supported Living Providers)
- Pharmacist/pharmacist assistant
- Phlebotomist and laboratory personnel
- Physician assistant/nurse practitioners
- Physicians (MD/DO – all settings)
- Public health workers providing vaccines and testing for COVID-19
- Radiation therapy technologists (RTTs)/radiologic technologists (RTs)
- Respiratory therapists
- Security personnel
- Spiritual care provider
- Social work, case management, Child Life staff (only those providing in-person support, including child welfare workers and adult protective services)
- Therapy services, for example, physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy
- Transportation services to and from health care settings, for example, testing sites, dialysis centers, ambulatory care
- Other health care personnel who have CDC defined exposure
- Other professionals and lay people who provide services as defined in “Vaccine Distribution Subcommittee: Phase 1A Guidance for Vaccinating Entities to Prioritize COVID-19 Vaccine in Priority Population”
If your Dane County organization has Tier 1a medical workers:
- Check with your organization’s healthcare system about vaccine availability.
- If you are not affiliated with a healthcare system that is able to vaccinate, Public Health Madison & Dane County may be able to provide your workers with vaccine or match you with another vaccinator. If you’re a volunteer, then that agency is your employer. If you’re a home health worker, then you should be licensed and can use the name on that business license. If you’re self-employed, then register like a business.
- Have one person from your organization fill out this survey.
- Public Health will follow-up with you to collect names and contact information of individuals eligible for vaccine.
- Individuals will be matched with appointments as vaccine becomes available.
Dane County has begun vaccinating people 65 years old and older, per state guidelines.
If you have a local healthcare provider, they should be reaching out to you, based on vaccine availability. You can also visit your provider's website for more instructions. Below are websites to a few of the most common providers in the area:
- If you do not have a local healthcare provider, Public Health Madison & Dane County will be able to vaccinate you or match you with a vaccinator in Dane County. If you are 65 years old or older and do not have a local healthcare provider, please fill out this survey so we can match you with a vaccinator.
- Please note that there are 700,000 people in Wisconsin who fall into this age group but Wisconsin is only receiving about 70,000 first doses per week. Not everyone in this age group will be able to be vaccinated immediately.
On January 26, the Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) announced the groups that will be eligible for vaccine starting on March 1, though the start date is dependent on the vaccine supply allocated to Wisconsin from the federal government. Dane County is following Wisconsin Department of Health Services’ (DHS) guidelines for vaccine prioritization. We do not decide who is in each tier.
Groups (tentatively) eligible March 1 include the following groups (in priority order):
- Educators and child care
- Individuals enrolled in Medicaid long-term care programs
- Some public-facing essential workers like food supply, public transit, utility and communications infrastructure, and 911 operators
- Non-frontline health care essential personnel
- Congregate living facility staff and residents
See the DHS website for further explanation of who is in the above groups. Currently, the amount of vaccine allocated to Wisconsin does not meet the amount of vaccine doses requested by vaccine providers. If the federal government increases Wisconsin’s vaccine allocation, vaccinations for these groups may begin before March 1. If Wisconsin receives less vaccine than expected in the coming weeks, this date could be pushed back.
I’m in one of the groups listed above. What should I do?
- We are collecting preliminary information from employers and organizations that might employ Tier 1b staff, as outlined above.
- If you believe your organization has employees who might be in Tier 1b, please have one person register your organization.
- When it is time for your group to be vaccinated, we will contact your organization with instructions on how your staff can individually register for a vaccination.
- This specific survey is for employers and organizations who believe they might have Tier 1b essential workers, not individuals.
- For the latest data on vaccine distribution in Dane County, see our weekly Data Snapshots. Please note the Dane County vaccination progress is only updated by the state once per week.
- To stay up-to-date on vaccine rollout statewide, subscribe to the Wisconsin Department of Health Services' weekly newsletter.
More Information About the Vaccine
- Review our fact sheet on the COVID-19 vaccine for an overview of the authorized vaccines.
- Read our series of blog posts about how the vaccine is developed, who gets it first and why, safety, and more.
- Other sources of credible vaccine information: