COVID-19 Vaccine Update from Jackson County Health Department

JACKSON COUNTY, MI  – From the Jackson County Health Department:

As previously reported, the Jackson County Health Department (JCHD)  received their first doses of Moderna vaccine in late December, as did Henry Ford Allegiance Health Hospital (HFAH) with the Pfizer vaccine. Both Jackson County pandemic response entities have been vaccinating Emergency Medical Services, frontline hospital health care workers and other Phase 1A prioritization groups as described by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services.

Yesterday the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) announced that the State will be moving to Phase 1B of vaccination including individuals age 65 and older; frontline essential workers including police officers, first responders, frontline state and federal workers, jail and prison staff; and preK-12 teachers and childcare providers on January 11, 2021.

The current limited supply of Moderna vaccine for JCHD and Pfizer for HFAH is being provided to those in Phase 1A Priority Groups one, two and three. Timing and completion of vaccinations within any phase in Jackson County is dependent upon the supply of vaccine and the capability to administer it.

JCHD and our healthcare partners are continually planning and re-assessing the vaccination strategy as new information and new vaccine becomes available. Click on https://www.michigan.gov/documents/coronavirus/MI_COVID-19_Vaccination_Prioritization_Guidance_710349_7.pdf   for the detailed State of Michigan Vaccination and Prioritization Strategy, updated January 6.

Though the MDHHS has stated that Phase 1B groups can begin next Monday, this will and can only occur in specific areas or counties of the state that have sufficient supply of vaccine and have completed or nearly completed the Phase 1A priority groups. Jackson County is not yet at that point due to supply of vaccine. All vaccine shipped to the Jackson County Health Department has been administered to the Phase 1A Priority groups and there are still additional people in these groups who have not received a vaccine. Please see our streamlined vaccination strategy and timeline at https://www.mijackson.org/2442/COVID-Vaccine.

Strategic planning for the next vaccination Phases and Groups continues and as vaccine becomes available for Jackson County, the administering partners will inform the next prioritized groups how, when, and where to receive vaccinations. Please note, all vaccinations are by appointment only. There are NO walk up vaccinations at this time in an effort to utilize vaccine in the most effective and efficient manner.

We know that the majority of Jackson County residents have been waiting for the vaccine as a critical part of ending what has been a long COVID-19 journey. We also share this desire and understand why there is frustration that vaccine is not readily available for everyone yet.  If you are a person age 65 or over (or you have a family member in that category), please pay close attention to updates through the Jackson County Health Department’s website at https://www.mijackson.org/2442/COVID-Vaccine, JCHD’s Facebook page, as well as local media outlets.  An informational phone line, 517-817-4469, is available that has a recorded message providing local vaccination information.

For the initial groups who fall into 1B due to profession, information from the health department will come through your employer but please also check our webpage for updates.  It is our goal to ensure that everyone knows when they are eligible to receive a vaccine.  At this time, we do not have the specifics of timing or quantities of vaccine that will be received therefore do not want to schedule appointments we cannot keep. We will utilize all available avenues to notify Priority Group 1B individuals of available vaccine and how to sign up for an appointment.