If you are 50 or over beginning Monday, March 15, 2021 you can receive the COVID-19 vaccine in the state of Texas.

According to NewsWest 9, the Texas Department of State Health Services has opened up the 50 and over phase since they report 93% of all fatalities in the state from COVID-19 have been those over 50.

The good thing is that a million Texans between the ages of 50-64 have already gotten their vaccinations which is about 20% of Texans in that age range.

“We’ve seen a remarkable decrease in the number of hospitalizations and deaths since people 65 and older started becoming fully vaccinated in January,” said Imelda Garcia, Texas DSHS associate commissioner for laboratory and infectious disease services and chair of the Expert Vaccine Allocation Panel. “Expanding to ages 50 to 64 will continue the state’s priorities of protecting those at the greatest risk of severe outcomes and preserving the state’s health care system.”

Texas started vaccinations for Phase 1A in early December, 1B followed later that month and now on Monday, Phase 1C begins.

Texas DSHS reports that over 7 million doses of the vaccine have been given out in the state with 4.7 million having received their first dose and 2.5 million being fully vaccinated.

Harris County Judge Lina Hildalgo is pleased with the state opening up Phase 1C but says there are still many who qualify that are waiting to receive their vaccine.

“We are prioritizing older ages over younger ages so once we get through the oldest cohorts them we move onto the youngest ones and we plan to continue doing that so it shouldn’t be an issue,” Hidalgo said.

Hildalgo urges Texans not to let their guards down even though the state is back open.

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