Michigan vaccine expansion an exciting surprise to health departments

Michigan vaccine expansion an exciting surprise to health departments

News that all Michigan adults would be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine beginning next month came as a shock to many across the state Friday, March 12, including the local health departments.

Health officers were aware of positive forecasts for upcoming shipments of vaccine doses. Most of them heard President Joe Biden announce the night before that he wanted all Americans 16 years and older to be eligible for a shot by May 1.

But the significant expansion announced by the governor’s office Friday morning came as a surprise to many of the departments handling the vaccinations themselves. That doesn’t mean it wasn’t welcome news.

“To be honest, we’re still digesting a lot of it,” said Steve Kelso, communications manager for the Kent County Health Department. “We have reason to believe the vaccine supply is about to increase dramatically and we think with the West Michigan Vaccine Clinic at DeVos Place, we’re in a very good place to do exactly what Biden said, to get these shots administered and maybe we can all have a happy Fourth of July.”

Related: All Michigan adults will be eligible for a COVID-19 vaccine by April 5

Kelso said the Grand Rapids vaccine clinic set a state record Thursday, March 11, by administering nearly 8,000 shots. And with more supply, he expects the site could get closer to 20,000 shots in arms per day.

“Terribly excited is the mood around…

Read More from www.mlive.com

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