Michigan is ranked 7th worst state for coronavirus administration, despite Gov. Gretchen Whitmer’s complaints about how the federal government has handled distribution.
According to the CDC data, just 27 percent of the 520,000 doses in Michigan have been administered, WZZM reported.
Only Alabama, Arizona, Georgia, Kansas, Mississippi, and North Carolina rank lower with fewer vaccinated people per capita. This comes after Gov. Whitmer complained three weeks ago that the federal government’s distribution was a disaster.
“My frustration level is high because in Portage there are vaccines ready to be distributed,” Whitmer said in mid-December, according to WDIV. “And the thing standing between us seeing that through is the federal government and I can’t get an answer why.”
Whitmer complained that her call to Health and Human Services Secretary Alex Azar had “gone unanswered.”
“Our police, our fire, our first responders are really at risk here,” Whitmer said. “You know, it’s incredibly foolish not to include this kind of relief right now as we go into these holidays.”
On Wednesday, Whitmer announced her administration is “loosening restrictions” on who is eligible for the other 73 percent of vaccine doses that have gone unused, Crain’s reported.
“The quicker we can distribute the vaccine, the quicker we can reduce the strain on our healthcare system and put an end to this pandemic once and for all,” Whitmer claimed.
Whitmer said vaccinations will begin Monday for teachers, child care providers, prison guards, police officers, and people over the age of 65.
“For this next phase, we are simplifying the eligibility for front-line workers to those who have the highest levels of potential exposure to the virus in their jobs,” Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, the state’s chief medical executive, said.
“We want to focus on those who are the most vulnerable to severe illness.”
Crain’s reported Michigan’s surplus of doses is growing “by 140,000 between Monday and Tuesday.”
“The governor and her administration must do better,” state Rep. Graham Filler (R) said in a statement. “The governor has shut us down and stated things will open up once the vaccine is available. Now, a vaccine is available, and she won’t follow through on the plan to get it out.”