Mayor: Detroit allotment of vaccines smaller than expected

DETROIT — The city of Detroit has received 6,000 COVID-19 vaccine doses this week — far short of what was expected — due to shortfalls from the federal government, according to Mayor Mike Duggan.

The city had been expecting 9,000 to 10,000 doses in its allotment from the state, Duggan told reporters Tuesday.

“We can work with 6,000, but it is not what we had hoped to try to keep expanding eligibility,” he added. Some governors have accused the Trump administration of deceiving states about the amount of COVID-19 vaccine they can expect to receive as states ramp up vaccinations for senior citizens and others. The government has attributed the anger to confusion and misguided expectations on the part of the states.

Detroit has opened free vaccinations at the downtown TCF center for people 70 and older, and people 65 and older who drive them to the center. Teachers, school and child-care workers, city employees and postal workers also currently are eligible.

Vaccinations scheduled this week will not be impacted.

Police officers, firefighters, city bus drivers also can receive vaccinations through the city. Vaccinations also are being given senior centers and homeless shelters.

“We’re using these vaccines probably within 72 hours of receiving them,” said Duggan, who added that he would like to open them up to people 65 and older.

“The day the Biden Administration tells us we can count on 10,000 (vaccines) a week we are going to bring the age down to 65,” he said. “We are going to do this as fast as we can, but we’re also not going to raise expectations that we can’t meet.”

President-elect Joe Biden takes office Wednesday and has lined up an expansive team of scientific and supply chain experts to boost testing and vaccinations and aims to shake up how the federal government manages the pandemic.

As of Saturday, Detroit had more than 27,500 confirmed coronavirus cases and 1,751 deaths since the start of the pandemic. More than 538,300 virus cases have been confirmed in Michigan and more than 13,800 people have died due to COVID-19.


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