Coronavirus update: Richmond area expands vaccine eligibility to all people 16 and over

Coronavirus

RICHMOND, Va. (WRIC) — Richmond area health districts have moved into Phase 2 of Virginia’s vaccination plan, making all those 16 and over eligible for a shot.

With nearly 20 percent of the state’s population fully vaccinated, Virginia appears to be on track to meet Gov. Northam’s timeline of making people 16 and over eligible by April 18.

“The COVID-19 vaccine is the light at the end of the tunnel—and that light is getting brighter every day as more and more Virginians get vaccinated,” Northam said when announcing the accelerated timeline last week.

The Virginia Department of Health announced Friday that the Richmond, Henrico, Chesterfield and Chickahominy health districts would all be entering Phase 2, sharing in a news release that many people who are pre-registered should expect emails and phone calls to schedule an appointment for a vaccine dose “as soon as next week.”

“This is a turning point in our vaccine distribution,” Amy Popovich, nurse manager for the Richmond and Henrico health districts, said in a statement.

Virginia’s vaccination effort

Virginia is getting 77,411 doses into arms each day on average, an increase of nearly 20,000 from this time last month. According to the state’s health department, 98.4% of the doses Virginia has received have been administered.

As of April 9, more than 4.5 million doses have been given out and 1.6 million people are fully vaccinated. Nearly three million Virginians have received at least one dose of a vaccine.

COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations

The Virginia Department of Health reported 1,542 new cases, which includes those who tested positive and have a probable case, on Friday. In total, Virginia has reported 632,625 COVID-19 cases and 10,451 deaths.

As of Friday, the Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association is reporting that 1,106 people are currently in the hospital with COVID-19, with 241 of those patients in the ICU. There are 125 people currently on a ventilator.

COVID-19 at local universities

Virginia Commonwealth University

As of April 8, the college has reported:

  • 44 active student cases and 12 active employee cases of COVID-19.
  • 4 students are in isolation on campus.
  • 11 students are in quarantine on campus.

University of Richmond

As of April 7, here is what the college has reported:

  • 21 current active COVID-19 cases
  • March 2021 monthly positivity was 0.5%
  • 22,609 total COVID-19 tests*

*Total COVID tests are the total number of PCR or antigen tests conducted by UR or self-reported by students, faculty and staff. Over 4 million vaccines administered in Virginia: Here are the volunteers making it happen

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