Detroit delays COVID vaccine appointments amid snowstorm


Detroit – The city is postponing 3,000 COVID-19 vaccine appointments Tuesday to Saturday in anticipation of heavy snowfall that could hit some residents at home, Mayor Mike Duggan said.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning for southeast Michigan, and Duggan said the city expected to be hit with six to ten inches of snow.

Detroit officials are urging residents to remove their vehicles from residential streets by 6:00 p.m. Monday. At some point Tuesday morning, crews will be deployed to clear the 1,884 miles of residential streets and 673 miles of main roads that Detroit is patrolling. The contractors have 24 hours to complete the snow removal, said the mayor.

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“We’re going to have to work this through as a community. We’re going to keep the vaccines going as much as possible, but neither are we going to ask people to take the risk of falling down in difficult driving conditions.” “Duggan said during an afternoon briefing at the Detroit Public Safety Headquarters.” There’s a good chance you’ll have a hard time getting out of your neighborhood tomorrow. “

Detroit’s DPW director Ron Brundidge attended the press conference with Duggan and noted that there are some neighborhoods with no driveways. The city has not declared a snow safety emergency and vehicles are not being towed, Duggan said.

Duggan said Monday that Detroit recorded its third confirmed case of the new highly contagious variant of COVID-19, SARS-CoV-2 B.1.1.7, over the weekend, but stressed that Detroiters were vigilant when wearing masks and the city “watch” it closely. ”

Duggan, who attended a Friday meeting in the Oval Office to discuss President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 rescue plan, has consistently expanded the city’s vaccine eligibility. He reiterated Monday that he is calling on the state and federal government to increase Detroit’s weekly allocation of the vaccine from 15,000 doses to 25,000.

On Monday, the Department of Health and Human Services announced a new program to ensure more of Michigan’s most vulnerable residents are vaccinated.

Undertakers are now vaccinated, and 41 state-qualified health centers in Michigan are receiving vaccination awards to vaccinate people aged 65 and over in medically underserved communities. Beginning March 1, the state will also extend the eligibility to workers in high-risk food processing and agricultural settings.

Duggan said the city will detail its own expansion plans in the coming days.

Detroit received a weekly allocation of 15,000 cans on Monday. However, Duggan expects the allotment to increase through March or early April.

“Hopefully we’ll get over 15,000 sooner,” he said. “But when you talk to the county executives in Wayne, Oakland, and Macomb, they all want more, too. Each takes care of their own constituents as they should be. We’re the ones who have proven we can do 15,000 a week without.” to work up a sweat. “

Over the weekend, Detroit hosted its first “Senior Saturdays” COVID-19 vaccination clinics in two churches with the goal of vaccinating 1,000 seniors. Duggan said Monday that the city will double the number of churches involved on Saturday, February 27, to continue efforts.

Joshua Mitchell, a vehicle driver / worker for the City of Detroit, checks the salt supply in his truck when he makes a quick stop on Conant and Kalsh Streets in Hamtramck on Monday, February 15, 2021.  Mitchell said he and other town of Detroit workers have been salting the streets since 4 a.m. in preparation for the impending snowstorm.

Late last week, Duggan announced that the city would be opening appointments for residents aged 18 and over with physical and developmental disabilities and their caregivers.

Vaccination doses in Detroit are also offered to restaurant workers, grocery store workers, security guards, and janitors who live or work in the city.

Other eligible persons include “good neighbor” drivers 65 and over bringing older residents to the center, key workers including K-12 teachers, childcare workers, and federal and state employees working in the city, clergymen and undertakers.

In response to the storm, the Washtenaw County Health Department announced it had canceled a vaccination clinic for Tuesday and appointments would be postponed.

Information about the vaccine can be found at Individuals unable to see information online can call (734) 544-6700 or 211 or email [email protected]

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Dusty Kennedy