Gov. Gretchen Whitmer on Friday announced a major ramp-up in the state's vaccine rollout, opening eligibility to residents 16 and up starting April 5. That's about five months ahead of initial estimates for when young people without underlying health conditions would be eligible for the shots.
“The safe COVID-19 vaccine is the most effective way to protect you, your family and others from the virus,” Whitmer said in a statement urging all eligible residents to get one of the three available shots. “It will help the country get back to normal and help the economy."
Those 16 and older with disabilities or medical conditions that put them at high risk of negative COVID-19 can get vaccinated starting March 22.
Currently, Michiganders 55 and older are eligible.
The ramp-up comes as the Biden administration seeks to expand eligibility to all Americans 16 and older by May. On Friday, the administration announced Ford Field would become one of 20 federal mass vaccination sites, delivering doses to 6,000 people per day.
So far, over 1 million residents have been fully vaccinated. The state's goal is to get approximately 7 million — or 70 percent of the state's population — vaccinated to achieve herd immunity.