LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) —Poultry workers could be among the first in line to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Health care workers and people in long-term care facilities will be the top priority when a vaccine is available, but Arkansas Secretary of Health Dr. Jose Romero says poultry workers could be next.

“We view these workers as essential. We know these workers have been the brunt of large outbreaks not only in our state, but also in other states,” said Romero, chairman of the Advisory Committee of Immunization Practices. “We have a moral and ethical imperative to care for all populations within our country.”

Romero says their status as high-risk of infection will make them a priority.