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For Immediate Release
Contact: Susan Ringler Cerniglia, MPH
Public Information Officer
Washtenaw County Health Department
Washtenaw County Health Department Vaccination Update
New scheduling process and expanded statewide eligibility starts today
YPSILANTI, Mich., March 22, 2021 – Statewide vaccine eligibility expands today, and Washtenaw County Health Department is also beginning a new scheduling process. The new process will allow online, self-scheduling for the mass vaccination sites in Ypsilanti and Chelsea. As before, the Health Department will provide phone scheduling for those who need it. Individuals already on the Health Department waiting list will be offered appointments before scheduling begins for those who are eligible starting today. For those eligible starting today, limited appointments are available for online scheduling, and these will be for appointments in early April.
Other providers, including pharmacies and the new FEMA/State of Michigan Ford Field site, continue to offer vaccine appointments. Pharmacies receive vaccine supplies directly from the federal government and may have more appointments available than local health departments.
“We are thrilled vaccine supplies are starting to improve for us as well as other providers. We also recognize there are still challenges,” says Jimena Loveluck, MSW, health officer with Washtenaw County Health Department. “Statewide prioritization and limited supplies have not allowed us to reach all of our essential workers and higher-risk community members, and we continue implementing strategies to increase access and strengthen equitable distribution.”
The Health Department is now including those essential workers under 1B that have not been previously eligible under state guidance. This includes grocery store workers, restaurant workers, veterinarians, and other essential workers. As appointments become available, these workers are now eligible to schedule. Remember available appointments are based on vaccine supplies, and it may take weeks to schedule an appointment.
Local vaccination efforts will continue to include community pop-up vaccination clinics to make vaccine more accessible, especially where impact of COVID-19 has been most severe or disproportionate. Community pop-ups will be scheduled with community partners and leaders and as appropriate for the planned site and population.
Expanded statewide eligibility
Starting Monday, March 22, all adults 50 and older, as well as individuals 16 and older with disabilities or medical conditions and their caregiver family members and guardians are eligible for COVID-19 vaccination under Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) prioritization guidelines. This includes individuals with intellectual or developmental disabilities.
On April 5, everyone 16 and older will be eligible to be vaccinated per MDHHS priority guidance. This represents an enormous increase in Washtenaw County individuals who will be eligible for vaccination.
New Health Department scheduling
The new online self-scheduling process (available at https://bit.ly/vaxwchd) will allow individuals to make appointments for upcoming clinics as they become available. New appointments will be added at least weekly or as existing appointments are cancelled. There is no longer a request process or waitlist for appointments.
If you schedule an appointment but find another option or cannot make it, please remember to cancel so someone else can schedule. If no appointments are available, please check back. As before, anyone not able to schedule online can call our main phone number (734-544-6700) for assistance.
Any resident 65 years old or older who has not yet received a vaccination is encouraged to call 734-544-6700 and leave a voicemail or email [email protected] so we can schedule them for an appointment as soon as possible. Over 74% of Washtenaw County seniors 65 years or older have received at least one dose of COVID-19 vaccine (Michigan Care Improvement Registry as of 3/16/2021).
The Health Department is committed to efficiently and equitably vaccinating Washtenaw County community members. We will continue to organize community pop-up vaccine clinics with partner organizations and community leaders and vaccinate homebound individuals with our Nurse on the Run team.
Vaccine appointments may also be available through local health providers or pharmacies including Meijer, Rite Aid, and, soon, Kroger. A regularly updated list of COVID-19 vaccine providers in Washtenaw County can be found on our website.
Washtenaw County Health Department The Washtenaw County Health Department promotes health and works to prevent disease and injury in our community, including responding to health emergencies like the COVID-19 pandemic. Our mission is to assure, in partnership with the community, the conditions necessary for people to live healthy lives through prevention and protection programs. Visit us at washtenaw.org/health or call 734-544-6700.