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Grocery employees, bus drivers recommended for vaccine

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A state advisory committee is recommending grocery-store workers and bus drivers be added to the list of people in Wisconsin to be inoculated in the next phase of the coronavirus vaccine rollout.

Adding those people to the list that already includes teachers, adults 65 and older and others would clear 1.6 million individuals for the next phase, officials said. And, with a limited number of doses received by the state each week, it could be some time before everyone in that phase gets the vaccine.

“If we look at the rollout of vaccine, it’s going to be a very, very, very long time before this target can be hit,” said Dr. Jonathan Temte, associate dean of the UW School of Medicine and Public Health, co-chairman of a subcommittee making recommendations to the State Disaster Medical Advisory Committee.

The panel is expected to consider the plan for the state’s phase 1b at a meeting Thursday.

The subcommittee has received about 5,000 public comments since it issued a draft plan last week which did not include grocery store workers in the next phase, the Wisconsin State

They would join others previously approved for the next phase, including corrections workers, prisoners, child care workers and mink farmers. Police officers and firefighters this week became the first group in phase 1b eligible for shots.

Those given priority in the first phase included frontline health-care workers and residents of nursing homes and assisted-living centers.

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