PORTAGE, Mich. – The eyes of the nation are on Portage, a city on Michigan’s west side in Kalamazoo County, just west of Battle Creek.
The monumental effort to create a COVID-19 vaccine came together Sunday as the first batches were shipped nationwide. It is the biggest vaccination effort in American history.
“What was exciting is that it puts us on the map,” said Marcia Miller. “That’s exciting in itself,”
Miller and her room mate were just among a group of spectators watching on, proud of their small town and the millions it will soon help across America.
“I was so excited I couldn’t stand it,” Miller said. “Watching all this, I said we have got to go see this actually happen as it leaves the plant.”
Workers on both the inside and outside are happy about accomplishment of the Phizer manufacturing site. From Portage, the doses of the vaccine will be kept in temperature safe packages and transported with GPS trackers and U.S. Marshals escorts.
The vaccine will be shipped to those on the front lines of the health care industry and nursing home patients.
How long will it take until the vaccine makes a difference?
“My hope is that this happens very expeditiously,” said Dr. Stephen Hahn, with the FDA.
The first batch of nearly 3 million vaccines are expected to be shipped to all 50 states Monday with more shipments coming Tuesday and Wednesday.