46ºF

A look at COVID-19 vaccine distribution across Metro Detroit

Michigan officials proud of work so far

DETROIT – Michigan officials said they are proud of the work so far in getting doses of the COVID-19 vaccine distributed.

However, many county officials have made it clear that the supply they’re receiving is far less than they would like.

Local 4′s Dr. Frank McGeorge took a look on Thursday at how state officials are determining how much vaccine goes where.

On a national and state level there is not enough vaccine available for everyone who wants it. That means decisions have to be made about where the limited supply goes.

The first principle of the state’s vaccine strategy is that “all Michiganders have equitable access to vaccines.” However, the state’s COVID-19 vaccine dashboard shows some apparent distribution differences.

READ: Tracking Michigan COVID-19 vaccine data

Oakland County has a high level of vaccine distribution. Detroit has had a moderate to high number of doses and Washtenaw County is at a moderate level. Macomb and Wayne counties are have a lower level of distribution. The majority of the state has a low level of vaccine distribution.

According to a spokesperson for the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services, a big reason for the variation is that at the start of the vaccination campaign health care systems received the majority of the vaccine. So counties with more healthcare workers received more vaccine. The presence of long-term care facilities compounded differences in a county’s allocation.

State officials said that when Michigan opened distribution on Jan. 11 to people 64 and older, frontline essential workers and teachers -- that meant a change needed to be made in the allocation formula. One of the principles for the new allocation is that health disparities should be reduced and barriers to vaccinations should be minimized.

Watch the video above for the full report.


Read more:

Questions about coronavirus? Ask Dr. McGeorge


About the Authors: