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Officials: Clinics crucial for residents needing second Pfizer dose

Courtesy Image An illustration of the coronavirus provided by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

ALPENA — Second-dose vaccine clinics on Sunday and Tuesday will provide what may be the only opportunity for residents who received the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine to finish their full vaccination, health officials caution.

Though weather may not be ideal, it is “very, very important” that people scheduled for second doses make it to their appointments at those clinics, according to Cathy Goike, spokeswoman for District Health Department No. 4.

The two clinics, and one that was held Friday, are the only Pfizer second dose clinics scheduled. Because of a nationwide Pfizer vaccine shortage, health officials cannot guarantee a spot in another clinic for those who miss their appointments, Goike said.

No first doses will be administered at the Sunday and Tuesday clinics because health departments don’t anticipate having enough Pfizer vaccines to provide second doses when they would be needed, Goike said.

Meanwhile, health officials cautioned people planning a spring getaway to practice all current safety precautions while on the road.

International travel will call for extra time for quarantine after travel and, as of Jan. 26, requires a negative COVID-19 test for all air passengers before they board a return flight into the U.S., health officials said.

Public health officials on Friday reported eight newly infected Northeast Michiganders, including four Alpena County residents, three Presque Isle County residents, and one Montmorency County resident. Alcona County data was not updated as of 5 p.m. Friday.

State data showed that, as of Thursday, 9,692 doses of coronavirus vaccine had been administered in Northeast Michigan.

As of Thursday, four people were hospitalized at MidMichigan Medical Center-Alpena with coronavirus infection, including two in intensive care, according to state data. The hospital was 36% full.

As of Friday, 30 people were hospitalized with confirmed or suspected COVID-19 infection across the state-designated, 18-county health care region that includes Alpena, Presque Isle, and Montmorency counties, according to state data.

As of Jan. 19, infection data for Alpena, Montmorency, and Presque Isle counties includes both confirmed and probable cases of COVID-19 infection. Alcona County data includes only confirmed cases.

Based on that data, 2,761 Northeast Michiganders have been confirmed or suspected infected since the pandemic hit Michigan in mid-March. Of those, 96 have died.

The last death was reported Tuesday.

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