Starting at 1 p.m. Friday, people included in the next phase for COVID-19 vaccination will be able to register for an appointment. But, the availability of appointments will likely be slim.
Due to a lack of supply, health officials say it's likely appointments will not be available for several weeks, and health systems and health departments are still moving through Phase 1A in many parts of West Michigan.
West Michigan health departments and health systems will have registration links posted at www.vaccinatewestmi.com/register.
"When you do register, you'll find detailed information about where you're going for your vaccine," said Kent County Health Dept. Director Dr. Adam London. "We do have a lot of partners who are all involved. Some are offering vaccine at different places some of their buildings some an alternative locations."
The rollout to the next phase brings with it a much larger group of people eligible to receive the vaccine despite vaccine supply still being limited.
Kent County estimates the next phase may include as much as 20% of the population.
"So, we know this to be a large group, and we really, I can't impress upon people enough, we really encourage people to be patient. Stay calm. The vaccine is going to be limited. It's going to take a little while for us to have enough to get it available to everyone," London said.
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Both of the available vaccines require two doses from the same manufacturer, so both appointments should be scheduled at the same location.
The State has opened vaccinations for the following people:
- All people 65 years of age or older not covered in Phase 1A. This includes those in a congregate setting who were not reached in Phase 1A.
- Prioritized frontline workers whose job requires frequent or intense exposure to others, and who, due to the nature of their work, are not able to maintain social distance. For example, a first responder may have to physically touch other people in their response, and a childcare provider cannot maintain social distance from children when caring for their physical needs.
Specific prioritized categories are:
- Pre-Kindergarten through high school teachers, support staff and childcare workers who usually have direct contact with children
- First responders not covered in Phase 1A (e.g., firefighters, police, conservation officers, inspectors)
- Corrections workers (e.g., staff in prisons, jails, juvenile justice facilities)
- Workers in homeless shelters, congregate childcare institutions, and adult and child protective services
The MDDHS prioritization guidance can be found here.
There are no out of pocket costs for consumers to receive the vaccine; however, those with health insurance will be asked to provide that information.
Individuals should not receive the COVID-19 vaccine if they are:
- In isolation or quarantine for COVID-19.
- Pregnant or lactating, without first consulting with your healthcare provider to weigh the risks and benefits.
- Have received any other vaccine in the last 14 days.
- Have received monoclonal antibody therapy for COVID-19 disease in the last 90 days.
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