COVID-19 vaccine eligibility expanded to 40 years and older effective Thursday

Department of Public Health and Social Services (PNC file photo)

During their weekly virtual meeting on Monday, the Vaccine and Antiviral Prioritization Policy Committee (VAPPC) agreed to expand the COVID-19 vaccine eligibility to adult residents 40 years and older effective Thursday, March 18.

The committee also discussed best uses of the Johnson & Johnson Janssen (J&J/Janssen) COVID-19 vaccine. As previously discussed during their March 9 meeting, the VAPPC heard considerations for populations that will best be served by the J&J/Janssen vaccine, including patients being discharged from the hospital.

The VAPPC also approved plans for DPHSS to move forward on a pilot project in partnership with the Federated States of Micronesia (FSM) Consulate Office, FSM Association of Guam, American Medical Center (AMC), Guam Regional Medical City (GRMC), and other community leaders and stakeholders from neighboring islands to launch a mobile COVID-19 vaccination clinic for members of the FSM community.

In line with Governor Lou Leon Guerrero’s plan to reopen the island to tourism on May 1, the VAPPC will consider expanding vaccination eligibility to tourism industry workers.

Currently, the Guam Hotel and Restaurant Association (GHRA) is conducting a count to determine how many individuals would need vaccines. These discussions were tabled to a later meeting, pending GHRA’s findings.