2/25/21 - A Message from Secretary Hou: Vaccination Campaign Update

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Dear colleagues,

Today we mark another milestone with COVID-19 vaccination efforts across the state. As supply allows, local health departments and other vaccination providers are able to expand vaccination to people who are part of Phase 1b Plus. As Governor Pritzker announced earlier this month, Phase 1b Plus includes both people with disabilities and people who have comorbidities and underlying conditions as defined by the CDC.

The Pritzker Administration is working with local health departments and other providers across the state to include these additional higher-risk individuals in their community vaccination plans in the weeks ahead.

This expansion applies to individuals 16 and older who aren't otherwise covered in previous eligibility categories. In accordance with the CDC guidelines, Illinois is using the below guiding framework for what qualifies as a disability, a comorbidity, or an underlying condition under Phase 1b plus.

Priority 1b Plus Population Description:

  1. Persons with a disability: For this purpose, a person with a disability is defined as a "person who is, and who is expected to indefinitely continue to be, subject to any of the following five types of disabilities: physical disability, developmental disability, visual disability, hearing disability, or mental disability." This definition is aligned with Illinois Statute: 15 ILCS 335/4a.
  2. Persons with comorbidities or underlying conditions:
  • Obesity
  • Diabetes
  • Pulmonary Diseases
  • Smoking
  • Heart Conditions
  • Chronic Kidney Disease
  • Cancer
  • Solid Organ Transplant
  • Sickle Cell Disease
  • Pregnancy

Additionally, we are pleased to share that through our text campaign, we have nearly 2,000 people signed up for on-going vaccination information. You can see the newest submissions of staff, stakeholders, and patients who have taken the IDHS pledge and are getting vaccinated in the collage above. We also encourage you to visit https://coronavirus.illinois.gov/s/vaccine-plan-overview for the most up to date information regarding vaccine efforts. If you are in Group 1b Plus, please visit https://covidvaccination.dph.illinois.gov/ to register to get vaccinated. If you have questions, please email dhs.covid19@illinois.gov.

As we work in conjunction with IDPH on vaccine efforts, we encourage you to continue to follow IDPH COVID-19 guidelines for your health and safety.



Grace B. Hou

Secretary, IDHS