CHICAGO (CBS) — Some clinics in the Chicago area are now cut off from getting any more shipments of first doses of COVID-19. They are being punished for breaking the rules.
Indiana’s commissioner of the state’s health department said certain clinics were vaccinating people outside of the age guidelines and those with no ties to the state of Indiana. That is why the state is cracking down and telling vaccine hunters from other states to stay home.READ MORE: On Third Day Of Lollapalooza, Concertgoers Advised To Bring Masks
“We got up early because we’re like, ‘Well, today’s the day,'” said Gail Dobblehoff of Homewood.
Dobblehoff she had already had a wild Thursday morning. Her husband spent it searching for a vaccine appointment now that she is eligible in the expanded Phase 1B of vaccinations.
“He kept looking and somehow found Goshen, which is about not quite two hours from us at a Kroger,” she said.
For someone living with type 1 diabetes, she felt the drive to Indiana was worth it. But not long after she got a call and an email saying Kroger had canceled.
“They could not take Illinois residents,” she said.
“We are not trying to be the vaccine police. That is the last thing we want to be,” said Indiana State Health Commissioner Dr. Kristina Box.READ MORE: With Delta Variant Worries Mounting, COVID Testing Returns Alongside Vaccination At 2 New Chicago Area Sites
Wednesday the Indiana State Department of Health cracked down on its vaccine guidelines, announcing clinics should no longer vaccinate anyone living outside of the state.
“We have decided to limit vaccine to Indiana residents only, so that every dose received in Indiana goes to Hoosiers,” said one official.
That even goes for people who only work in Indiana. Officials said roughly 19,000 people from out of state got their shots in Indiana. The health department says as of Friday, 6,900 of them were from Illinois. They will be given their second dose in the state. It’s bookings for the first shot that are now for Hoosiers only.
“Please be prepared to show a utility bill, piece of mail or other documentation to prove you’re an Indiana Citizen when you arrive at a vaccine clinic,” an official said.
Lucky for the Dobblehoffs they learned that before making the drive, and she found a last minute opening for a shot in Will County. Turns out it was the day.
“I didn’t believe it until I had the band-aid on my arm,” Dobblehoff said.
It’s the first step in getting her life back, made without crossing state lines.MORE NEWS: 4 People Hospitalized When Car Crashes Into Building In Humboldt Park
Indiana’s health department says the clinics it identified going against state guidelines will get the number of second doses they need for patients but will not be given any more first doses. Their vaccinating days will soon be done.