CHICAGO (CBS) — Thousands more people are eligible to sign up for the COVID-19 vaccine beginning Monday in suburban Cook County and around Illinois.
But as CBS 2’s Steven Graves reported Sunday night, confusion over the process to get a shot is growing with more openings.READ MORE: Chicago Weather: Dry And Quiet Pattern
As it is now, confusion is rampant over the different eligibility rules in different areas. But one doctor said more vaccine will hopefully aid in the situation.
Come Monday, if you are in higher education, a government worker, or a member of the media, Illinois is opening up vaccines to you.
In suburban Cook County – if you are a part of 1B+ – 16 and older with underlying conditions like cancer diabetes or pregnancy – Monday is also your day.
But Chicago doesn’t expand beyond seniors and essential workers until next week.
This is a lot to take in – especially if you qualify.
“There’s just a mass amount of confusion,” said Vaccine Angel Caryn Davidson.
“So it’s complicated and it’s kind of hard to get around the system,” said Vaccine Angel Sarah Summers.
As Vaccine Angels, Davidson and Summers help other people around Illinois find appointments. Each eligibility phase opens a new set of issues booking slots under state, city, county, and pharmacies’ guidelines.READ MORE: Man Lost Everything As He Waited On Callback From Illinois Department Of Employment Security That Never Came
“And then if that varies from pharmacy to pharmacy,” Davidson said.
For example, if you go on Walgreens’ site for eligibility, it directs you to state guidelines.
Jewel-Osco said it is a combination of state and local county rules.
And then there are those county mass-vaccination sites open for Illinois residents.
“But then other counties, you have to be part of the county,” Summers said.
Starting on Monday, suburban Cook County will open their sites to anyone across the state. They are instructing pharmacies it provides with doses to expand to 1B-plus.
“I hear you loud and clear on the concerns about confusion,” said Dr. Kiran Joshi of the Cook County Department of Public Health. “We don’t want that.”
So, bottom line is that Cook County said if you’re eligible and sign up, they’ll try to vaccinate you.
Doctors said there is more capacity to take people after increased state and federal resources.
“Our focus is always on the residents of our jurisdiction,” Joshi said. “So then I think it behooves us in the spirit of cooperation to open up our sites to residents outside of suburban Cook County.”MORE NEWS: COVID-19 In Illinois: New Cases Have Nearly Doubled In The Past Month; Infection Rate At Highest Point Since January
Cook County also plans to join Illinois in offering vaccine appointments to everyone sixteen and older April 12. Again, the City of Chicago has its own rules.