Today is supposed to mark the beginning of a new round of COVID-19 vaccination options for Michigan residents. It’s happening as questions linger about why so few vaccinations have been administered in the state so far.  Some data points to Michigan lagging far behind most other states. But Democratic Governor Gretchen Whitmer and the state Health and Human Services Department contend Michigan ranks high for vaccinations.

Either way, today’s new phase opens vaccination options for everyone from any stat resident 65 and older, front line essential workers like police officers, first responders, front line state and federal employees, and most school teachers. The expanding vaccination program is also opening up to specific residents based on race and ethnicity.

The state’s media release about the program opening up to more people includes the admission that 80 percent of the deaths attributed to the COVID-19 virus involve those age 65 and older.

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As of this morning, all county health departments are able to begin vaccinating residents 65 and older. But you’re advised to contact your local department before showing up. Most have specific schedules in place to meet the demand. Most are also involved with administering the second dose of the two-dose vaccines so the workload for the local departments just went up exponentially.

Essential and childcare workers, along with eligible teachers should wait for notification from employers about vaccination clinic dates and times for them.  No one should show up at a clinic and expect to be vaccinated without an appointment. You should check the state virus web page for the latest information.

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