MARSHFIELD – Marshfield Clinic Health System announced this week its focus will remain on vaccinating the current eligible population that includes those 65 years or older, frontline health care workers, police and fire personnel and corrections staff.

Wisconsin Department of Health Services has announced that starting March 1 educators, people enrolled in Medicaid long-term care programs, some public-facing essential workers, non-frontline essential health care workers and staff/residents in congregate living facilities are eligible to receive their COVID-19 vaccine.

While those new groups will be eligible March 1, the demand from the older than 65 population in particular, who are among the most vulnerable to get the virus, will continue to take priority. They will get access to the COVID-19 vaccine even if they request it after March 1.

People can be added to the waitlist by visiting or calling 877-998-0880 if they do not have internet access. Here individuals will take a survey that will capture information to expedite outreach and scheduling when vaccines become available.

The same survey request process will be used for groups eligible March 1 starting at 8 a.m. Marshfield Clinic is encouraging the next round of groups to hold on signing up until March 1 to avoid having their survey disregarded because of their current ineligibly. 

At this time, Marshfield Clinic is receiving a very limited number of doses on a week-to-week basis for its entire service area, so scheduling capacity is restricted. It may take several more weeks, even months, to vaccinate those who are on the COVID-19 vaccination waitlist. Currently, more than 33,000 people are on the waitlist.

“We are optimistic that vaccine supply will increase in the coming weeks, but due to the limited vaccine supply, we urge everyone to continue to be patient,” said Tammy Simon, RN, MSN, vice president at Marshfield Clinic Health System’s Institute for Quality Innovation and Patient Safety. “We know that is a challenge as so many people desire the vaccine that will provide protection against this disease and lead to a return of pre-pandemic life. Until vaccine supplies significantly increase, our scheduling capacity is restricted.”

DHS is putting an emphasis on vaccinating educators. The health system is working with county health departments and local school districts on plans to vaccinate educators. The health system will provide vaccinations specially designated for this eligible group when the system receives them from the state.