COVID-19

Health care workers to receive first doses of vaccine Monday

Frontline workers are set to be the first recipients of a new COVID-19 vaccine approved Friday by the FDA.

Truckloads of frozen vials shipped out of a Pfizer manufacturing facility in Portage on Saturday. Those vials – filled with a newly approved COVID-19 vaccine – were bound for hospitals all over the U.S.

Some don’t have far to go. At least one shipment is headed for Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo where employees are expected to be among the first in the nation to receive the vaccine.

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“The people who will be asked to make their appointments first are people that work within Bronson Hospital that have the most contact with patients,” said Dr. Richard Van Enk, the director of infection prevention at Bronson, in an interview with WOOD TV 8.

In total, 84,825 units of the vaccine are set to be delivered to Michigan hospitals in the coming days.

While health care workers will be at the front of the line for inoculation, state health officials are continuously reviewing where to target limited supplies, according to Bridge Michigan.

Phase 1A includes medical first responders and health care workers with the most patient interaction. It also includes staff at nursing homes and assisted living facilities.

Phase 1B will include K-12 school staff and people at homeless shelters, prisons, and child care facilities.

Phase 1C will include people over age 64 and others with existing health conditions that put them at high risk. That does not include pregnant women, for whom the vaccine has not yet been tested.

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