COVID vaccine vial

Perry Sweeten, regional director of pharmacy at Mayo Clinic Health System, holds a vial containing Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine in December 2020 in Mankato.

The Free Press

MANKATO — Gov. Tim Walz announced a new tool Thursday alerting Minnesotans to when and where they can get COVID-19 vaccines.

Vaccine supply continues to lag behind demand — not helped by this week’s frigid temperatures across the county — but the state is encouraging residents to sign up for the COVID-19 Vaccine Connector in anticipation of ramped-up shipments down the road.

“We still have a frustratingly limited vaccine supply from the federal government, but every Minnesotan should know their chance to get a vaccine will come,” Walz stated in a release. “Today, we are connecting them directly to that process. We need to make it as easy as possible for every Minnesotan to get the vaccine when it’s their turn — no matter where they live and no matter their personal circumstances.”

The tool at mn.gov/vaccineconnector asks people to fill out contact information, medical history and other details to determine their vaccine eligibility. Signing up will later prompt an alert once the person becomes eligible.

Currently, Minnesota is prioritizing vaccines for health workers, long-term care residents, educators, child care workers and people age 65 and older. They’re already being alerted through their employers, facilities or health care providers.

Older Minnesotans who already signed up for vaccines through the state’s pilot program earlier this year won’t need to resubmit their information, according to the release. Those residents are already in a random selection process for vaccine appointments in Minneapolis, Duluth or Rochester.

Educators also won’t have to resubmit their information if they already completed the Education and Child Care survey.

The state previously launched a vaccine finder page showing what places across the state are receiving vaccines.

Follow Brian Arola @BrianArola

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