Michigan expects 250K COVID-19 vaccine doses by year's end; will go to healthcare workers

Gov. Whitmer announced a new bipartisan commission whose goal will be to educate Michiganders on the COVID-19 vaccine. Dr. Khaldun also announced the vaccine allotment that's expected from the federal government for Michigan. 

The federal estimate is Michigan will receive about 84,000 doses in the first allocation of the Pfizer vaccine when it becomes available, which could be within the coming days. If and when the Moderna vaccine is approved, which could be later this month, estimates show Michigan would receive about 173,000 doses in the first allocation. 

That means by the end of the month, possibly 257,000 frontline healthcare workers in Michigan could receive the first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. Both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine will require two doses, which will be separated by several weeks.

Dr. Khaldun said the state expects to receive weekly shipments of more vaccines after the first allotment is distributed, but those allotments haven't been estimated yet. 

"Initial data shows that both of these vaccines are about 95% effective and it will be important we can vaccinate as many people as possible," Dr. Khaldun said

She has laid out the state's plan for distributing the vaccine, which you can read here

The state will be prioritizing the following frontline healthcare workers first: 

  • ICU workers
  • Hospital medical floor workers
  • EMS workers
  • Those in emergency departments 

In the second allotment, which Dr. Khaldun hopes to be in January, the following will then be prioritized: 

  • Care facility workers
  • Residents of skilled nursing facilities

"All of this is dependent on how quickly additional vaccines become available from the manufacturer," Dr. Khaldun reminded. "We hope to be able to have vaccines available to the general public by late spring." 

As of December 10, the overall case rate in Michigan is at 514 cases per million people per day. Dr. Khaldun said the case rate has been declining for the past 19 days in all regions. 

The percent positive is around 14% and has been fluctuating up and down for the past few weeks. 

Hospitalization rates are trending down, Dr. Khaldun said, and have decreased in all but two regions. 

Dr. Khaldun said health officials are remaining "cautiously optimistic" about these trends. 

Meanwhile, the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services extended its epidemic "three-week pause" order for 12 more days, which is through December 20.