DETROIT, MI – U.S. Senator Gary Peters (D-MI), Chairman of the Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs Committee, helped secure more than 200 federal personnel to help vaccinate more Michiganders. Peters supported a request from Governor Gretchen Whitmer and worked with the Federal Emergency Management Administration (FEMA) to secure the additional personnel who will be assisting at three mass vaccination sites: DeVos Place in Grand Rapids, Ford Field in Detroit and TCF in Detroit.
Personnel will serve both clinical and non-clinical roles at the vaccination sites. They are being deployed from the Department of Defense, U.S. Coast Guard and the U.S. Forest Service. In addition, support is being provided to hire additional ambulance personnel for these sites. They began arriving Wednesday, April 21 and are expected to be fully operational no later than April 28.
“Getting shots into the arms of Michiganders as quickly as possible is essential to combating this pandemic. That is why I urged FEMA to support Governor Whitmer’s request for additional federal resources and personnel who can help administer more COVID-19 vaccines to folks all across our state. As Chairman of the Homeland Security Committee, I’m focused on ensuring that Michigan has the resources needed to slow the spread and ensure vaccines are widely available in every community,” said Senator Peters. “Even as more Michiganders get their shots – we’ll still need to continue wearing masks, social distancing, and avoiding large crowds to help prevent infections and save lives.”
“We appreciate the support from our federal partners, especially adding additional boots on the ground to allow for more shots in arms more quickly,” said Governor Whitmer. "We are still fighting this virus, and we must continue masking up, socially distancing, washing our hands, and crucially, getting vaccinated. I will continue fighting to make sure Michigan gets the support it needs so we can get back to normal sooner."
“This deployment is a part of our continued commitment to support the State of Michigan's vaccination effort," said Kevin M. Sligh, FEMA Region 5 Acting Regional Administrator. "Along with these personnel, FEMA will work together with the state to identify any additional resources that can be brought to bear to vaccinate Michiganders as quickly as possible.”
Michigan recently reached a milestone of 6 million doses of the safe and vaccines distributed in just over four months, with the most recent one million vaccines administered in a record 11 days. To date, 47% of Michiganders have received at least one dose, with 33% of Michiganders being fully vaccinated, moving the state closer to its goal of equitably vaccinating at least 70% of Michiganders ages 16 and older as soon as possible. The state has repeatedly hit its daily dose goal of 100,000 shots.
Michiganders eligible to receive the COVID-19 vaccine can find and schedule appointments in several ways:
- Find a vaccination location and schedule an appointment with the CDC COVID Vaccine Finder.
- Check the website of your local health department or hospital to find out their process or for registration forms.
- Check additional vaccination sites, such as local pharmacies like Meijer, Rite Aid, Walgreens, CVS, Kroger, Walmart (Mid/Central and Northern MI) or Snyder Drugs (U.P. residents).
- Residents who don't have access to the internet or who need assistance navigating the vaccine scheduling process can call the COVID-19 Hotline at 888-535-6136 (press 1) Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday and Sunday 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.
Michigan residents seeking more information about the COVID-19 vaccine can visit Michigan.gov/COVIDvaccine. Information around this outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.
Peters has led several efforts to ensure development of the Coronavirus vaccine is rooted in science and transparency and that its distribution is efficient, swift and equitable. As a part of the American Rescue Plan, Peters secured funds that were directed to the vaccination clinic at Ford Field. He also released a report highlighting shortcomings in the Trump Administration’s vaccine distribution plans and providing recommendations to ensure that vaccines are safe, effective, trusted by the public, free, and widely available to every community – which included utilizing the DPA.