Dec. 31, 2020
Vaccine Allocation Phases
State Releases New Guidance for Essential Workforce Vaccination
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services this week released new interim guidance for critical infrastructure protection outlining vaccination for critical workers during Phases 1B and 1C.
Decisions about identifying workers who protect critical infrastructure are complex and will take time to determine as more doses of the vaccine are produced, according to the guidance. Work performed in some industries is imperative to the health, safety and well-being of Michiganders. Some jobs will be prioritized for vaccination during Phase 1B of distribution, like jobs that make and distribute food, keep the lights on for businesses and homes, protect and educate our children, and develop medicines, such as COVID-19 vaccines. Some essential workers whose work must be performed on-site, who were not covered in previous phases, will likely be vaccinated during Phase 1C. 

Visit Michigan.gov/COVIDVaccine for up-to-date information about COVID-19 vaccines.

Read the full guidance below.
Message from Dr. Joneigh Khaldun

Dr. Khaldun outlines state's strategy to meet initial operational goal for vaccination
From the letter:

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) has set an initial operational goal of vaccinating 70 percent of Michigan’s population over age 16 by the end of 2021. As of December 27, over 278,000 vaccines had been shipped across the state, and over 59,000 had been administered. MDHHS recognizes the complexities and challenges of such a massive vaccination effort. We also know that the quicker vaccines are administered, the quicker people become immune, the more lives can be saved, and the sooner this pandemic can end.

MDHHS is now requesting the following:

1. All organizations that are currently receiving the vaccine should allow vaccination of any personnel identified within Phase 1A, including priority groups one, two and three. Health systems can accelerate their planning to prioritize group one; however, if there are vaccine or appointment slots available, then individuals in the second and third priority groups can and should receive the vaccine now.

2. At least 90 percent of the vaccine received in your facility should be administered within seven calendar days of arrival. While the state is currently in Phase 1A of vaccinations, we anticipate needing hospital assistance in vaccinating populations in further groups. This may include assisting with vaccination clinics offsite (i.e., mobile clinics) or offering the vaccine to other qualified individuals that seek care within your facilities.

As a reminder, the focus of Phase 1A is to vaccinate paid and unpaid persons serving in health care settings who have the potential for direct or indirect exposure to patients or infectious materials and are unable to work from home, as well as residents in long-term care facilities.

Phase 1A is broken into three priorities:

Priority One: Keep critical healthcare infrastructure open and functioning through vaccination of staff who perform direct patient care and work in critical areas.

Priority Two: Prevent outbreaks and protect residents in long-term care facilities.

Priority three: Keep necessary healthcare infrastructure functioning (outside of hospitals).


Read the full letter below:
State Provides Expiration Date Guidance for COVID-19 Vaccines
The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services Wednesday released additional guidance about expiration dates for COVID-19 vaccines to help support vaccine storage and handling practices at provider locations.  
 
Expiration Dates and COVID-19 Vaccines:
 
The expiration date should be checked prior to preparing or administering vaccine. Expired vaccine or diluent should NEVER be used. As additional stability data become available, the expiration dates for some products may change and MDHHS will keep providers informed when this happens.
 
For emergency use authorization (EUA) COVID-19 vaccines that do not have a final expiration date, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has set up an expiration date of 12/31/2069 to serve as a placeholder date in the CDC's vaccine tracking center, VTrckS. Such vaccines have a dynamic expiration date, which can change over time as additional stability data become available. This placeholder date, which is far in the future, is intended to serve as a prompt for the provider to check the latest expiry information on the manufacturer’s website.  
 
Moderna COVID-19 Vaccine: To determine the expiration date, providers can scan the QR code located on the vial or carton or access the manufacturer’s website directly, enter the lot number and the expiration date will be displayed. CDC’s COVID-19 Vaccine Expiration Date Tracking Tool can help providers keep track of the expiration date by lot number.
 
Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine: This vaccine product has an expiration date located on the vaccine vial. CDC will be updating VTrckS effective immediately to replace the placeholder date in VTrckS with the actual expiration date.
As a reminder, the below table outlines differences in the two COVID-19 vaccines currently authorized for emergency use.
Skilled Nursing Facilities Begin Vaccination
Staff and Residents Receive Vaccine
Skilled nursing home residents and staff began receiving the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine made by Moderna this week through the Pharmacy Partnership for Long-term Care Program, according to a press release from the office of Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

The pharmacy partnership is a national initiative to provide COVID-19 vaccine to the Phase 1A priority groups of long-term care facility residents and staff. The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) is partnering with CVS and Walgreens through the program to manage and facilitate safe vaccination of this patient population, while reducing burden on long-term care facilities and local health departments.

There are about 91,000 people including residents and staff at nursing facilities, and it is expected to take about three weeks to complete vaccinations. Additional eligible facilities will soon begin receiving vaccinations including assisted living, personal care homes, residential care, adult family home, adult foster home, HUD supportive housing for the elderly and veterans’ homes. The list of sites enrolled in the program is available at Michigan.gov/COVIDvaccine.

Information around the COVID-19 outbreak is changing rapidly. The latest information is available at Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.  
Pharmacists Critical to Vaccination Efforts
Pharmacy technician Erith Welch recently received her vaccine: "Doing my part to help end the pandemic. Getting the vaccine is our most important responsibility in order to protect ourselves, loved ones and communities."

Share Your Photos With Us!
In light of the critical role pharmacy professionals are playing in the nationwide vaccination efforts getting underway, the Michigan Pharmacists Association (MPA) would like to invite you to share your photos with us. Whether you are preparing, administering or receiving the vaccine, help us promote the safety and efficacy of vaccinations in ending this pandemic, and pharmacy professionals' role in doing it!

Share your photos with us on social media, or email communication@MichiganPharmacists.org. We would love to feature the incredible work you are doing on the frontlines. Thanks for your dedication and hard work as we enter what we hope will be the last phase of our battle with COVID-19.
MPA member Sarah Hill said: "I was fortunate enough to get my first dose of the COVID vaccine this week from the Ingham County Health Department. I was initially leery about trying the vaccine, due to it being the new genetic vaccine technology, but after doing lots of my own research, I decided getting the vaccine was the best choice for protecting myself and my family. I was very impressed with the vaccination clinic I attended. You could tell a lot of thought and planning it went into making sure that we were all able to receive the vaccine in the safest, most efficient manner. I was nervous that because the vaccine has to be stored at such a low temperature, that it would burn when it went in, but I honestly did not feel a thing! It was easier than a flu shot. As expected with an intramuscular vaccine, I had a little bit of muscle soreness the morning after, but otherwise I have had no side effects!"