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Essentia Health patients age 65 and older can now schedule vaccinations by phone in Minnesota

Minnesota residents age 65 and up who have not yet been vaccinated against COVID-19 are now being offered a couple of new options for scheduling a vaccine appointment through Essentia Health. Those who live within Essentia's service area can either call directly, or set up their appointments online via the healthcare provider's MyChart program.

DL - Carla Hanson Missy Peterson.jpg
Melissa Peterson, director of nursing at Essentia Health St. Mary's in Detroit Lakes, gives a COVID-19 vaccine to hospital staffer Carla Hanson. Frontline healthcare workers are among the first in the country to receive the vaccine; many have very recently gotten their second doses and are now fully vaccinated. (Submitted Photo)

Essentia Health’s Minnesota facilities are now offering additional scheduling options for vaccinating those who are 65 years of age and above.

If you are a Minnesota resident over age 65 and live within Essentia’s service area, you can either call 833-494-0836, or starting Friday, March 5, you can also use your MyChart account to schedule your vaccination.

To sign up for MyChart, visit EssentiaHealth.org and click on the MyChart button in the upper right-hand corner; then click “sign up.” There is also a MyChart app for smart devices.

Per current guidance from Gov. Tim Walz, the state must work together to vaccinate 70% of the 65-and-older age group before moving on to other groups, such as those with specific high-risk medical conditions and targeted essential workers.

With the addition of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, Essentia is receiving a greater allocation of vaccines, and is therefore vaccinating residents of Minnesota who fit the criteria of being at least 65 years of age and live in Essentia Health’s service areas, regardless of whether the person is an Essentia patient.


Since December, Essentia Health has given more than 45,000 vaccines in Minnesota. Vaccine clinics have been held and continue to be held across the state at Essentia locations. Essentia's mobile teams also are going directly into communities to administer shots to populations that otherwise may experience barriers to receiving the vaccine.

Through exhaustive clinical trials that featured tens of thousands of patients, vaccines currently available to Essentia Health (Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson) were found to be highly effective and safe. If you have questions or concerns regarding the vaccine or if you have a history of severe allergic reactions to vaccines or medications, contact your primary care provider.

Additional information regarding the COVID-19 vaccine can be found by visiting EssentiaHealth.org and clicking on the “vaccine distribution” link at the top of the page.

A reporter at Detroit Lakes Newspapers since relocating to the community in October 2000, Vicki was promoted to Community News Lead for the Detroit Lakes Tribune and Perham Focus on Jan. 1, 2022. She has covered pretty much every "beat" that a reporter can be assigned, from county board and city council to entertainment, crime and even sports. Born and raised in Madelia, Minnesota, she is a graduate of Hamline University, from which she earned a bachelor's degree in English literature (writing concentration). You can reach her at vgerdes@dlnewspapers.com.
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