DEARBORN, Mich. - The next phase of Michigan's efforts against COVID-19 begins this week as Metro Detroit's biggest counties will start taking appointments for booster shots for people with compromised immune systems.
Oakland, Macomb, and Wayne counties are all offering a third dose of the Pfizer and Moderna vaccine to anyone who has already completed their 2-shot series already. The FDA granted approval to the booster shot following evidence of the vaccine's declining effectiveness for slowing the spread of the virus.
It won't be long before booster shots are recommended for all fully vaccinated residents. As counties figure out the best way to roll out those vaccines, they'll be using existing infrastructure to start administering extra doses this week.
Who is immunocompromised?
It's actually a term that was floating around earlier in the pandemic when conversations about risk varied between people with stronger immune systems showing better responses to a coronavirus infection than people whose immune system was weakened.
There's a slew of public health reasons that could contribute to a weakened immune system but it primarily includes those recently going through an organ transplant, has an HIV infection, are taking immune response suppressants, or someone with certain chronic health conditions.
The best way to assess one's risk would be to ask their family doctor.
Wayne County says it will be offering booster shots for free to all eligible residents at all Wayne-County sponsored vaccine sites.
"Boosters for immunocompromised residents are another safe and effective tool to help our residents stay safe from COVID-19," Executive Warren Evans said. "The best way to end this pandemic is for all eligible residents to get vaccinated and wear masks in public indoor spaces. Both actions are proven ways to slow the spread of COVID-19."
Walk-in vaccinations are available to residents at Wayne County clinics for both initial shots and boosters. Appointments, as well as arrangements for in-home boosters for homebound residents, can be made by calling 1-866-610-3885 or text "WAYNE VAX" to 48355.
Those who are seeking a vaccine can get the Pfizer vaccine at the following locations:
- Henry Ford Centennial Library, Dearborn; Monday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
- Maplewood Community Center, Garden City; Monday through Saturday, 9:00 a.m. - 7:00 p.m.
- Wayne County Community College - Belleville and Taylor campuses; Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
- Flat Rock Community Center; Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
- Lincoln Park Community Center; Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
The Moderna vaccine is available here:
- Wayne County Community College - Harper Woods Campus; Mondays, Wednesdays, Fridays, Saturdays, 9:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.
- Schoolcraft College, Livonia; Tuesdays and Thursdays, 9:00 a.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Macomb County is operating with similar public health guidance and plans to offer booster shot administrations.
The county is making third dose vaccine appointments available during the regularly scheduled hours where vaccines from the 2-shot series are also available.
That includes clinics at the Verkuilen Building in Clinton Township and the Southwest Center in Warren.
Individuals that need to make an appointment for a third dose can go here to set things up.
If someone needs help scheduling an appointment or they need transportation assistance, they can call SMART at 586-421-6579.
The Oakland County health department got started on offering booster vaccines last week, administering third dose shots at the North Oakland Health Center in Pontiac and the South Oakland Health Center in Southfield.
Additionally, most local pharmacies and doctor's offices are now offering vaccines to both walk-ins and reservations. An entire list of what is open and when they're offering shots can be found here.
Anyone who needs to call to set up an appointment can access a call center at 1-800-848-5522 between 8:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday through Friday.