WWTV CBS 9&10 Traverse City: U.S. Senator Gary Peters Visit Traverse City Vaccination Clinic

The mass-vaccination clinic in Grand Traverse County played host to U.S. Senator Gary Peters on Wednesday. The Senator visited the site in Traverse City and got a tour from the county health department. Peters also stopped to talk with county employees and members of the National Guard.

Senator Peters talked about the Biden Administration’s plans to divert vaccines away from areas where there is plenty of supply, and sending it to areas where COVID case numbers are surging. “When we saw this recent surge for example, the Governor asked for additional doses. There were other doses available in other parts of the country. I do believe we should have been able to bring those into our state in order to help us. But understand when we have excess doses it will go to places that need it as well. That’s how you have a national coordinated response.”

Meanwhile the Grand Traverse County Health Department is making plans to wind down its operations for the mass vaccination clinic at the Hagerty Center over the next few weeks. They’ll focus more on satellite clinics and delivering vaccine where it’s needed the most. Emergency Preparedness Coordinator Mike Lahey says, “We’re definitely not finished. There’s a long road to go with reaching the numbers of the vaccine percentages that we want to achieve.” He adds, “Now we really need to start branching out to these outlying communities that may not have as much access to that vaccine to provide them that resource that’s so critical…. There’s just some barriers there that we need to fight through to get to that.”Gt Vax Clinic Peters

And 50% of the population in Grand Traverse County is now fully vaccinated – and 62% have received one dose. The mass vaccination site has played a key role in that, says Health Officer Wendy Hirschenberger. “We’ve administered over 40,000 doses out of NMC’s Hagerty Center.”

By:  Bill Froehlich, Josh Monroe
Source: WWTV CBS 9&10 Traverse City