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Lansing lawmakers urge CDC to prioritize Michigan in COVID-19 vaccine distribution

Posted at 9:30 PM, Dec 03, 2020
and last updated 2020-12-03 21:58:54-05
(WXYZ) —

There have been more than 45,000 COVID-19 cases in Wayne County and, sadly, more than 1,500 deaths.

It’s one of the hardest-hit areas in the state.

Now, lawmakers in Lansing are pushing at the federal level for Michiganders to get vaccinated first.

The exact rollout date of the covid-19 vaccine is still in question. But we know it's coming soon.

"It looks like it's going to be available by the end of the month," says Senator Dale Zorn.

Zorn is urging the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to vaccinate Michigan first through a resolution.

He says it's a must, due to the enormous impact of COVID-19 in the state.

A grim toll of nearly 10,000 have died from coronavirus in the state since the beginning of the pandemic.

"I'm asking that Michigan be a part of that model program," says Zorn.

Pfizer says their vaccine is 95 percent effective. The company was expected to ship 100 million doses around the world.

But they’re cutting that number in half. They say raw materials were found in early production that didn't meet their standards.

Infectious disease expert Dr. Arnold Monto, from the University of Michigan, says the vaccines will be safe.

"There are side effects. A lot of people have aching in their arm, maybe not feeling well or a day, a day and a half," he says. "These are acceptable side effects, given the level of protection we get."

Former Presidents Obama, Bush, and Clinton say they'd take the COVID-19 vaccine shots on camera to boost confidence once it becomes available.

"I would take, and I would do my own personal research on the vaccine," says Zorn.

State health officials expect the vaccine to be ready in two weeks.

First in line will be nursing home residents and health care workers, and the vaccine could be available to the general public by late spring.

Meanwhile, Governor Gretchen Whitmer says she's extending the use of the National Guard to help with logistical and transportation support, even to help distribute the vaccine until March 31.

Additional Coronavirus information and resources:

Click here for a page with resources including a COVID-19 overview from the CDC, details on cases in Michigan, a timeline of Governor Gretchen Whitmer's orders since the outbreak, coronavirus' impact on Southeast Michigan, and links to more information from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, the CDC and the WHO.

View a global coronavirus tracker with data from Johns Hopkins University.

See complete coverage on our Coronavirus Continuing Coverage page.

Visit our The Rebound Detroit, a place where we are working to help people impacted financially from the coronavirus. We have all the information on everything available to help you through this crisis and how to access it.