Health Department Opens COVID-19 Vaccination to 64 Years and Under with Underlying Health Conditions Starting Monday, March 15, 2021

March 11, 2021

(Des Moines, IA) – Starting, Monday, March 15, 2021, The Polk County Health Department, Polk County hospitals and clinics and select Medicap pharmacies will open COVID-19 vaccine appointments to 64 years and under with underlying health conditions pending vaccine allocation. Partners will continue to vaccinate Phases 1A, 1B, Tier 1 and 65 years and older during this time.

March 15, 2021, COVID-19 vaccine appointments will be open to:

“The past two weeks we have seen an increase in our Pfizer allocation, which is incredibly beneficial as additional phases and tiers are opening throughout the state,” said Helen Eddy, Polk County Health Department Director. “We’ve had additional conversations with our pharmacy partners, hospitals and clinics and we feel confident and ready to start opening vaccinations in Polk County to 64 years and under with underlying health conditions.”

On Monday, March 22, 2021, we will begin to vaccinate Phase 1B, Tier 2:

1- Farm Workers (year round, seasonal and migrant) whose work environment (including employer provided housing, break rooms, and transportation) or shared short-term housing (with co-workers) does not allow for adequate social distancing.

 2- Frontline workers (not clerks, cashiers, office staff or managers) employed in the manufacturing and distribution (not retail, not hospitality) of critical goods necessary for survival (Food, Air, Water, Medical, Safety) whose work environment won’t allow for social distancing at all (not that some of the time they must work in close quarters).

3-Individuals with disabilities living in home settings and their direct care staff

  • Disabilities as defined by the ADA: a major physical or mental disability that  substantially limits one or more major life activity. Individuals may live at home or in a group home setting. Example includes locations such as Orchard Place.
  • Home bound individuals, under age 65, who rely on care or services from others
  • Medicare considers you homebound if: You need the help of another person or medical equipment such as crutches, a walker, or a wheelchair to leave your home, or your doctor believes that your health or illness could get worse if you leave your home; And, it is difficult for you to leave your home and you typically cannot do so
  • Direct care staff are those individuals, paid or unpaid, who provide direct care to person(s) with a disability on an ongoing basis. This could include direct family members caring for the disabled person.

 “At Polk County Health Department, we would never turn away community members who are in great need of the COVID-19 vaccine,” said Eddy. “However, we want the community to make smart and honest decisions and not take away COVID-19 vaccines from those with underlying health conditions.”

Seniors and individuals 64 years and younger with underlying health conditions who DO NOT have computer or internet access should call (515) 323-5221. Individuals in Phase 1B, Tier 1 and those with internet and computer access should continue to monitor vaccine availability at

COVID-19 vaccine appointments will be available based on vaccine supply. To find COVID-19 vaccine locations and appointment availability, please visit:



COVID-19 Call Center for eligible individuals WITHOUT computer or internet access, please call 515-323-5221 Monday – Friday 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM.