We have been able to implement a scheduling system to allow individuals to schedule their appointments.
From Michigan Department of Health and Human services as of 1/6/2021
1/11/2021 Vaccine Update
Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency (BHSJCHA) was notified that it will be receiving 975 doses of Pfizer vaccine this week. Due to a new collaboration with the Kalamazoo County Health Department that has an ultra-cold freezer to store Pfizer vaccine, we are now able to receive and administer the Pfizer vaccine. Because we are receiving this additional vaccine for the tri-county area we have scheduled clinics for PreK -12 grade educational staff and remaining individuals in category 1A. We do not expect that there are enough doses of vaccine to vaccinate every PreK-12 grade educational staff member. As more vaccine is available in the tri-county area to the local health department and the local hospitals, more opportunities for category 1B individuals to get vaccinated will be publicized. Everyone in category 1B is important to us, please keep checking this site for announcements on additional vaccine clinics.
BHSJCHA is partnering with local hospital systems to deliver the COVID-19 vaccine in the tri-county area.
1/6/2021 Vaccine Update
The Branch-Hillsdale-St. Joseph Community Health Agency has a very limited supply of the vaccine and we are currently vaccinating individuals in category 1A. MDHHS has stated that as of January 11th, local health departments and hospitals in the state can begin vaccinating for category 1B. At this time, due to a shortage of the vaccine, we are not able to schedule vaccinations for category 1B individuals. We are expecting to receive additional vaccine the week of January 24th and will open our schedule to include appointments for some category 1B individuals at that time. Please check this page for up-to-date information on when the appointment calendar will be open for scheduling category 1C which includes individuals aged 65 and older. Thank you for your patience and understanding.
1/4/21 VACCINE UPDATE - ATTENTION PRIORITY GROUP 1A-
COVID vaccine clinics are planned in each of our offices this week. Anyone in PRIORITY GROUP 1A not being vaccinated by their employer can call to schedule an appointment. Explanation of the 1A PRIORITY GROUP is at www.michigan.gov/covidvaccine.
Essentially we will vaccinate anyone with direct patient contact (dentists, hygienists, optometrists, home health care workers, etc.) and those listed without direct patient contact in that group as well.
To schedule an appointment:
St. Joseph County call 269-273-2161 ext. 205
Branch County call 517-279-9561 ext. 100
Hillsdale county call 517-437-7395 ext. 336
We are not vaccinating any other priority groups at this time.
Last Updated 12/28/20 - BHSJCHA received its first shipment of Moderna Covid-19 vaccine late last week and has begun vaccinating public health staff in Three Rivers, Coldwater, and Hillsdale. Local hospitals in all three counties have also received vaccine allotments to start vaccinating their staff. Public health staff is receiving vaccine so they can begin vaccinating people in our communities. Some small vaccination clinics are in the works for 1A priority workers and more will be scheduled after the first of the year when staff is back from vacations. At this time, clinics are not open to the general public but BHSJCHA will keep the community updated on this webpage as priority group phases\are addressed.
Last Updated 12/18/20 - In the United States, the first COVID-19 vaccine has received emergency use authorization from the Food and Drug Administration. Shipments of these vaccines have begun, but BHSJCHA has not yet received its first supply of the vaccine.
FDA has rigorous scientific and regulatory processes in place to facilitate development and ensure the safety, effectiveness and quality of COVID-19 vaccines. Read more about the latest news from the FDA on the approval of COVID-19 vaccines.
Vaccine manufacturers will continue to release limited supplies of COVID-19 vaccines during the first few months that they are available. As the local health department, we are responsible for supporting emergency vaccine distribution and have plans in place to do so.
The Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) makes recommendations for who should receive vaccines, and in this case, who should receive the COVID-19 vaccine first. States have the option to tailor their vaccine priorities for their state.
Michigan has released prioritization guidance in accordance with the ACIP recommendations (last updated 12/23/20):
1. Phase 1A includes paid and unpaid persons serving in health care settings who have direct or indirect exposure to patients or infectious materials and are unable to work from home, as well as residents and workers in long-term care facilities.
2. Phase 1B includes persons 75 years of age or older and frontline essential workers in critical infrastructure:
Group B: Frontline essential workers in sectors essential to the functioning of society and at substantially higher risk of exposure to SARS-CoV-2 because their work related duties must be performed on site and involve being in close proximity (i.e., within 6 feet) to the public or to coworkers.
Front line essential workers in critical infrastructure include:
• Pre Kindergarten through High School teachers, support staff and child care workers who usually have direct contact with children
• First responders not covered in Phase 1A (e.g., firefighters, police)
• Food and agriculture workers
• Critical manufacturing workers
• Corrections workers (ex. prisons, jails, juvenile justice facilities)
• U.S. Postal Service workers
• Public transit workers
• Grocery store workers
• Workers in homeless shelters, congregate child care institutions, and adult and child protective services
• Workers with unique skill sets not covered above, such as non-hospital laboratories and mortuary services
3. Phase 1C includes individuals age 16 years or older at high risk of severe illness due to COVID-19 infection and some other essential workers whose position impacts life, safety and protection during the COVID-19 response.
4. Phase 2 is a mass vaccination campaign for all individuals who did not otherwise fit into the earlier groups for whom the vaccine is recommended.
Initial vaccine supplies are expected to be small, but will consistently be shipped to our community. The first priorities include health care workers providing direct care, people who will be vaccinating others, and residents in long-term care settings.
Please be patient. It will take weeks or months to move through each of the phases of the distribution plan. We are working quickly to provide more detailed information as it becomes available.