By Jessica Mathews /

The Livingston County Health Department (LCHD) is hosting three COVID-19 vaccination clinics for priority groups this week – which officials anticipate will finish off the rest of their supply until another shipment toward the end of the month.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services recently updated vaccine priority guidance – authorizing local health departments to begin vaccinating the next phased group starting today. That includes people age 65 or older and front-line, essential workers with frequent or ongoing exposure as part of their work. That includes some but not all essential workers previously designated in Phase 1B. First responders, police officers, jail and prison staff, pre-K-12 teachers and childcare providers are included.

In Livingston County, Phase 1B represents thousands of newly eligible individuals but officials have cautioned that vaccine supply is very limited and will not cover everyone who is eligible at this time.

Health Department Director Dianne McCormick told WHMI the department has received a total of 1,200 vaccines since December 23rd and has administered 580 doses. She says there are three clinics scheduled this week, which will finish off the remainder of their vaccine and also complete the Phase 1A priority groups the Department is targeting. McCormick said they were notified that their next shipment of vaccine will be the week of January 24th. Once they know how many doses of vaccines the Department will be receiving, she says they’ll begin scheduling the Phase 1B group clinics. A sign-up form is available on the LCHD webpage.

Meanwhile, the latest report from the Health Department was released on Friday - providing a summary of COVID-19 trends and activities for Livingston County over the last two weeks. During that time, there were 837 total cases - marking a 5% increase compared to the previous two weeks – and 14 new hospitalizations. The report states there were six deaths in the county – the same as the previous two week period. Overall, death rates are said to have been increasing since mid-October. The current positivity rate is 11.9% - which officials say has started to increase in the New Year. The local rate is higher than the state rate of 9.7%.

The full report is attached.

Photo: St. Joseph Mercy Livingston Hospital.