Heard on Detroit Today with Stephen Henderson

Hackel Criticizes State for Opening Vaccine Eligibility Beyond Seniors, Most Vulnerable

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Image credit: Jake Neher/WDET

The Macomb County Executive says the move created demand that couldn’t be met with the number of available doses.

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As Michigan moves past phase 1A of the COVID vaccine distribution, more Michiganders are eligible to receive the vaccine. The problem is that supply of the vaccine is still limited. This disparity in vaccine rollout has people wondering who should be getting the limited doses right now. 

We created a demand that we cannot fulfill the supply for.” — Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel

Now that restaurants and many schools are open, there are more essential frontline workers who need the vaccine. According to Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel, the state made an arbitrary decision by opening these places up with a small supply of the vaccine.


Listen: Macomb County Executive Mark Hackel discusses MI vaccine rollout


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Mark Hackel is the Macomb County Executive. He says he’s frustrated that Michigan went beyond the first phase of vaccine eligibility when doses are still so limited. ”We created a demand that we cannot fulfill the supply for,” he says. Hackel believes vulnerable seniors should be prioritized in the rollout for the time being. ”Seniors shouldn’t have to compete with younger people from all the other categories right now.” 

In Macomb County, Hackel says the confusion surrounding who gets the vaccine is overwhelming. “(There was) incredible tension created because everyone expected they would be first… They’re fighting to figure out how to get through phone lines, how they can get an appointment online.”

Web story by Nora Rhein.

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