Calhoun County continues to give COVID-19 vaccinations as fast as they can, and County Health Officer Eric Pessell admits to a little bit of Déjà vu.  “As we continued to vaccinate folks last week, it’s almost like the movie ‘Groundhog's Day’.  It’s the same thing over and over and over again. My staff and I were kind of joking about that but it’s going to be this way for a while, so we're going to have to get used to it.”

The department is busy finishing up with some groups and is about to start adding people to the eligible list.   “We’re still vaccinating people 65 years and older, school workers and daycare workers. We were able to get some daycare workers done over the weekend.  I think Saturday, we had a clinic for those 65 and older and we’re finishing up on that age group.  If you are 65 and older and you’re not on our waiting list and haven't received a vaccine, give us a call because it's a very short wait right now, which is great news.”

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Pessell says that as of today, March 8th, Governor Whitmer has opened it up to people 50 and older with severe underlying conditions and/or disabilities.

“I can't give you the exact date, but this week we'll be launching a way for you to register online for an appointment to be vaccinated.  You won't have to call on the phone.   Right now we don't want you to call.  Just check our website because within the next day or two we should have the ability for people to make the appointment online.  I think we're going to open it up to 50 and over, regardless of your background and your health status on March 22nd.”

Pessell says that right now health officials want to try and put that put people with an underlying condition at the front of the line. “There's quite a broad range of what that means.”  Included in that group are individuals age 16 to 64 years with COPD, hypertension, chronic kidney disease, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, or other conditions that puts them at high risk of negative COVID-19 outcome.

For a full list of underlying conditions, click here.

Pessell says they expect the same amount of vaccine this week as they received last week.  He said the Health Department is sticking with the Pfizer vaccine in their clinics and transferring the Moderna vaccine to hospitals or pharmacies.  He says the department is better equipped to keep the Pfizer vaccine at the required cold storage temperatures, and it also helps the department with scheduling challenges using one vaccine, as they have different time intervals between shots.

For general information on Calhoun County vaccinations, click here.

LOOK: Answers to 30 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

While much is still unknown about the coronavirus and the future, what is known is that the currently available vaccines have gone through all three trial phases and are safe and effective. It will be necessary for as many Americans as possible to be vaccinated in order to finally return to some level of pre-pandemic normalcy, and hopefully these 30 answers provided here will help readers get vaccinated as soon they are able.

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