April 18 2021
6:44 AM
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Contagious Covid variants and looser restrictions could challenge Vaccine progress
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Story by Houston Keene | Fox News - Story Source
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  PANDEMIC Covid vaccination  
Oregon health officials said a push from the Biden administration to open Covid vaccination to all adults by May 1 is welcome. But they cautioned Oregon can't commit to that timeline without an increase in federal supply.

Oregon health officials and Gov. Kate Brown on Friday said the state is on the verge of conquering the Covid pandemic, but could be waylaid if more contagious variants of the virus become widespread or if Oregonians become less diligent about wearing masks and following other health guidelines.

"While we know vaccine supplies are ramping up, enabling us to reach more of you more quickly, we are most definitely not out of the woods just yet," Brown said.

Brown and Oregon Health Authority Director Pat Allen said a push by the Biden administration to speed the pace of Covid vaccination was encouraging. But they stopped short of committing to making all adults eligible for a shot by May 1 as President Joe Biden ordered states to do on Thursday.

Allen said Oregon's ability to do that would depend on supplies from the federal government

"While this administration has met its commitments so far, we don't have any specific information about when any additional doses will arrive. Until we get more clarity, we need to keep our current timelines in place," Allen said.

Allen announced one change to Oregon's vaccination schedule. Pregnant people 16 and older will now be eligible to receive a vaccine starting March 29, the same day agricultural workers, wildland firefighters and adults 45 and older with underlying health conditions become eligible.

Other frontline workers, including grocery store employees, and adults under 45 with underlying health conditions will become eligible for a shot May 1 under Oregon's current timeline, but that could be moved up if supplies increase. Read full story