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Metro Detroit vaccine providers noticing drop in demand

Posted at 4:54 PM, Apr 26, 2021
and last updated 2021-04-26 17:45:11-04

TROY, Mich. (WXYZ) — When MyHealth Ascension Urgent Care in Troy first began offering the COVID-19 vaccine, their online appointments were booked within minutes and eager patients stood in long lines waiting for their shot.

"It was sincerely hectic when we first opened up,” said General Manager Sarah Horn.

Today, those long lines are long gone as demand is starting to slow.

"I’d say demand has dropped probably in the last week or so," Horn said. "It doesn't seem as prevalent or as many people are wanting it.”

Horn estimates about 40% of their new appointments are being canceled or rescheduled, while 15%-20% just don’t show up.

"We're actually getting a lot of people not showing up, mostly first doses instead of second doses,” Horn said. "We’re still able to see an appropriate amount of people but it’s not like it was in the very beginning.”

No shows make it tricky for clinics to know how much vaccine to draw out each day. So far, MyHealth has only had to throw out about 50 doses. Statewide, there have been close to 4,000 wasted doses, but not all are from missed appointments.

“It’s really a rare thing is a wasted dose because that includes dropped viles, syringes that have broken off or dropped syringes or a malfunction of the syringe,” said Kerry Ebersole- Singh, Director of the Protect Michigan Commission.

Other places like Beaumont Health are also seeing a drop in first dose appointments. They’re now launching walk up clinics this week, hoping that may entice more people.

“I think everybody is really starting to worry that people are just reluctant to get the vaccine now,” said Jeffrey Fischgrund, Chief of Clinical Services at Beaumont Health. "We still have a lot of second doses but we see the number of first dose appointments is dropping very quickly."

As more vaccine becomes easily available, the lines here at MyHealth likely won’t be that long again. Horn says that’s fine by her, as long as people are getting the shots.

“I hope that we’re getting to something where it evens itself out, but I guess we’ll see."

MyHealth Ascension offers the Moderna vaccine in Troy and the Pfizer vaccine at their Southfield location. Both have recently began offering limited walk-ins. Meijer pharmacy also announced that every Meijer Pharmacy will now accept walk -ins.