Whitmer doubles Michigan's daily vaccination goal to 100,000

LANSING, Mich. (AP) — Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Wednesday doubled Michigan’s daily COVID-19 vaccination goal to 100,000 shots.

She cited continuous week-over-week increases in allotments and an expanded number of providers that can administer doses. She called vaccinations safe, effective and essential to getting the country back to normal.

“These new, higher vaccine targets are a testament to what we can do together, and we need to meet them so we can keep rebuilding our economy,” the Democratic governor said in a statement.

The state’s direct allotment of doses — which is separate from vaccines going to pharmacies from the federal government — will total about 620,000 next week, a record. That is 12%, or roughly 66,000, more than this week and includes a substantial boost in the one-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine.

Michigan is facing a third surge in cases. It had the country’s second-highest per-capita rate over the past two weeks, trailing only New York.

Starting Monday, all people ages 16 and older in Michigan will be eligible for the vaccine. Whitmer is encouraging providers to prioritize the most vulnerable, including seniors and those with disabilities, but says they should vaccinate residents ages 16 through 49 now if there are unfilled appointments.