Michigan surge strategy: Biden sends federal resources, isn't boosting vaccine supply

The Biden administration is sending Michigan federal resources to support vaccinations, testing and therapeutics, the White House said April 9, as first reported by The Associated Press.

President Joe Biden outlined how the government will help Michigan better administer the doses allocated to the state, as well as surge testing capacity and drugs for virus treatment, in an April 8 call with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, according to AP. The federal government will not provide a "surge" of COVID-19 vaccine doses, as Ms. Whitmer requested.

President Biden told Ms. Whitmer that his administration is ready to send 160 Federal Emergency Management Agency and CDC personnel to Michigan to aid the vaccination effort, in addition to the 230 federal personnel already deployed to the state. President Biden also said his administration is prioritizing the distribution of doses via federal channels to areas of the state Ms. Whitmer identifies.

During an April 9 news conference, Ms. Whitmer urged schools to offer remote education, youth sports to pause and people to avoid eating indoors at restaurants, all for two weeks. She emphasized that it is a request, not a mandate. 

Ms. Whitmer confirmed speaking with President Biden and said she asked him to send more vaccines to Michigan. "At this point, that's not being deployed. But I'm not giving up," Ms. Whitmer said.

Michigan's COVID-19 case rate was highest in the U.S. April 8, at 492.1 cases per 100,000 people, according to the CDC.  

On Feb. 1, Michigan eased some restrictions, allowing indoor residential gatherings of up to 15 people from no more than three households, and indoor gatherings outside the home of up to 25 people. Masks and social distancing are required at all residential gatherings.   

 

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