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Health leaders ask people to 'be patient' when scheduling an appointment for the COVID-19 vaccine

Many Michiganders who are eligible to get the vaccine are struggling to get registered

WEST MICHIGAN- Phase 1B of the COVID vaccine distribution continues to rollout in West Michigan.

Teachers are among the eligible populations to get the vaccine, and in Kent County, school districts are organizing to vaccinate their teachers and staff as they face calls from Governor Whitmer to get back in the classroom by March.

Kent ISD interim superintendent Ron Koehler says teachers will be notified directly to register for the vaccine through their school district email system.

"And they're being encouraged to register as soon as possible and to get the vaccine," says Koehler. "It's the best opportunity for us to return to face-to-face instruction which we know to be the most effective form of instruction."

For other eligible populations, go to the VaccinateWestMI website to register online, and keep in mind appointments will only be booked if vaccines are available.

If you cannot register online here are a list of phone numbers to call for assistance to make an appointment:

  • The Kent County Health Department: 616-326-6992
  • The Ottawa County Health Department: 616-396-5266
  • The Muskegon County Health Department: 231-724-8856
  • The Metro Health Vaccine Call Center: 616-252-6161

Health officials ask that you commit to the appointment that you make and if you make appointments at multiple sites to please cancel the ones you will not keep.

"Each time you make a reservation or registration for your vaccination, a set of things goes into a motion – a vaccine is reserved for you, staff time is set aside for you, and when you don't keep those appointments then that effectively limits your neighbors, friends, family's ability to come and get that shot," says Kent County Health Department communications manager Steve Kelso. "This vaccine is very precious and it is very difficult to handle so the appointments are set accordingly so we can maximize the through but we also want people to be patient."

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