Meatpacking workers now eligible to receive COVID-19 vaccine in Arkansas

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LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The state of Arkansas expanded phase 1B of its COVID-19 vaccine rollout to include food manufacturing workers, effective today, Governor Asa Hutchinson announced during his weekly virus update on Tuesday, March 2.

An estimated 49,000 Arkansans will be eligible in this group, which includes meat processing and grain & oilseed milling employees, Hutchinson said.

“We look back on the history of our cases and where we had early spikes in cases, breakouts, as well as deaths, and we had a real jeopardy with those that were in the food processing industry,” Hutchinson said. “Again, we wanted to move them in there first because they work close in proximity to each other.”

Clinics may be arranged through worksites, and vaccines are also available through community pharmacies or clinics around the state.

Hutchinson on Tuesday said the state is close to its goal of finishing phase 1B by the end of March.

He said the state hopes to expand the rollout to phase 1C at some point in April.

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