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Health Department: Arizona Can Meet President Biden's May 1 Vaccination Goal

President Biden  said Thursday that he wants all American adults to be made eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine by May. Arizona’s health department says the state can meet that goal.

Vaccines are still in limited supply nationwide, so in most parts of Arizona only workers in some essential occupations and people 55 and older  qualify to get a shot. But Dr. Cara Christ, director of the Arizona Department of Health Services, told reporters Friday that the state's plan over the next several weeks is to expand eligibility to include those 45 and up, followed by 35 and up, then everyone else.

“We anticipate that it would take us about three to four weeks to move through each of the age groups, which would put us in line with meeting the president’s goal that he set," Christ said. 

Christ said Arizona's weekly allocations of vaccines have been steadily increasing and she expects the state will see even more of an increase in April. 

“As we get more vaccine we’re going to be able to open it up even more and more and more places are going to have vaccine, so we anticipate that May is a very doable timeline," Christ said.

About one in five Arizonans  has now had at least one dose of a vaccine. The rate is highest among older populations — about 60% of Arizonans 65 or older are vaccinated.

→  Q&AZ: What You Need To Know About Getting The Coronavirus Vaccine In Arizona

Katherine Davis-Young is a senior field correspondent reporting on a variety of issues, including public health and climate change.