State expanding vaccine eligibility in bid to accelerate process

People 65 or older, first responders, and teachers can sign up for vaccination
Posted at 1:42 PM, Jan 06, 2021
and last updated 2021-01-06 15:00:55-05

LANSING, Mich. — Governor Whitmer announced Wednesday her office and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is moving to a new phase of the COVID-19 vaccination plan.

Starting Monday, January 11, people in Phase 1B Group A and Phase 1C Group A will be eligible to receive the vaccine. That includes those 65 and older, frontline essential workers including police officers, first responders, frontline state and federal workers and jail and prison staff; and preK-12 teachers and childcare providers.

“We are pleased to move the state forward in the next stage of vaccinations,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, Michigan's chief medical executive and chief deputy for health. “These vaccines are safe and effective, and we especially want our first responders, teachers and older adults to get vaccinated as soon as possible. The strategy we are announcing today is efficient, effective, and equitable, focusing on making vaccine available to those who have the highest level of risk, whether it is because of where they work or because of their age.”

Khaldun and Whitmer say a big factor in the decision is that 80 percent of COVID deaths in the state involve people over the age of 65.

Read: Michigan's COVID Vaccine Phases

“The more people we can get the safe and effective vaccine, the faster we can return to a sense of normalcy,” said Governor Whitmer. “I urge all seniors to get the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible and that all Michiganders to make a plan to get vaccinated when it becomes available to you."

Track how many people have received a COVID-19 vaccination

People who qualify because of their age will be able to sign up for a vaccine clinic through their local health department or health system. The state promises to provide details on this webpage. First responders, teachers, and child care workers will be vaccinated through programs run by their employers.