CHICAGO (CBS) — Illinois is expanding the list of essential workers who will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine over the next two weeks.
Gov. JB Pritzker’s office said, starting Monday, March 22, higher education staff, government workers, and media will be eligible for the vaccine in most of Illinois.READ MORE: Ed's Driveway: Ford Mustang EcoBoost
Starting one week later, on March 29, restaurant and bar staff, construction trade workers, and religious leaders also will be eligible for shots.
The expansion won’t cover the city of Chicago and the Cook County suburbs, which are setting their own eligibility rules for vaccines.READ MORE: Electrical Fire At O'Hare International Airport Closes Pedestrian Tunnel
Pritzker’s office credited President Joe Biden with nearly doubling vaccine shipments to the states since he took office in January, noting Illinois received 800,000 doses this week, and expects to receive 1 million doses per week by April.
On Wednesday, Mayor Lori Lightfoot announced all adults with underlying health conditions, and essential workers who aren’t already eligible for vaccinations will be able to begin receiving shots on March 29 in Chicago.
Cook County officials have not yet announced when they will open up eligibility for all essential workers, but adults with underlying health conditions in the Cook County suburbs will be eligible to sign up for vaccinations starting Monday.MORE NEWS: Family Escapes House Fire In Brighton Park
The governor announced Thursday that all Illinois residents age 16 and up outside of Chicago will be eligible for shots starting April 12.