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Metro Detroit vaccine providers noticing drop in demand

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TROY, me. (WXYZ) – When MyHealth Ascension Urgent Care in Troy first launched the COVID-19 vaccine, their online appointments were booked in minutes and eager patients stood in long lines waiting for their shot.

“It was really hectic when we first opened up,” said General Manager Sarah Horn.

Today those long lines are long gone as demand slowly slows down.

“I would say demand has probably been down in the last week or so,” said Horn. “It doesn’t seem that widespread or that many people want it.”

Horn estimates that around 40% of their new appointments are canceled or postponed, while 15% to 20% just don’t show up.

“We actually get a lot of people who don’t show up, mostly first doses instead of second doses,” said Horn. “We can still see a fair number of people, but it’s not what it was in the beginning.” ”

No shows make it difficult for clinics to know how much vaccine to take each day. So far, MyHealth only had to throw away about 50 doses. Almost 4,000 cans have been wasted nationwide, but not all of them come from missed appointments.

“It is really a rare thing for a dose to go to waste as it involves a dropped abomination, syringe that has broken off or dropped, or syringe malfunction,” said Kerry Ebersole-Singh, director of the Protect Michigan Commission.

Other places like Beaumont Health are also seeing a decrease in first-dose appointments. This week they are now opening walk-up clinics in the hopes that it could attract more people.

“I think everyone is starting to really worry that people are reluctant to get the vaccine now,” said Jeffrey Fischgrund, director of clinical services at Beaumont Health. “We still have a lot of second doses, but we can see that the number of appointments for the first dose is falling very quickly.”

As more vaccines become readily available, the queues here at MyHealth are unlikely to be as long. Horn says that’s fine with her as long as people get the shots.

“I hope we get to something where it balances out, but I think we’ll see.”

MyHealth Ascension offers the Moderna vaccine in Troy and the Pfizer vaccine at their Southfield site. Both have recently started offering limited walk-ins. The Meijer pharmacy also announced that every Meijer pharmacy now accepts walk-ins.

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Dusty Kennedy